Living in the Awe
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Holiness of God

Fear not man

Testimonies of the Fear of God

Regarding the fear of God, here are three questions you can possibly respond to:

1) Share an illustration of what happens when a person fears man.

2) What does it practically mean for you to fear God?

3) What are some of the tough decisions that you need to make so that you continue to fear God?

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1) Share an illustration of what happens when a person fears man.

On Speaking Out

One of my problems is my silence. I do not speak up my opinion and as a result that opinion which should be heard is not voiced. I am not suggesting that I always should speak up. From early on I think I remember cringing into silence. I continue to see this pattern emerge at important times. Another part of my problem was that I was a middle child and liked fitting in. I like to work with those of differing opinions and help create a common ground. However, the Lord does interrupt my natural inclinations and asks me to be firm and speak out.

I remember one early Monday morning the Lord had put the burden of gambling on my heart. The gambling crowd was trying to move river gambling into my city. As the Lord spoke to my heart, I knew He wanted to write an article to the local newspaper on this issue. I was fine praying against the invasion of gambling, but when asked to stick my head into the secular world and write on gambling I began to quiver. However, the Lord pushed on my heart letting me know that this was what He desired. I praise the Lord for not only having the article published but also a couple of months later, they were denied that access into our city. God be praised.

I regularly must battle with my pride in order to do what the Lord wishes. A good example is personal evangelism. Each time I ready to evangelize I must focus on what the Lord wants and as He said to Joshua, "Be strong and courageous." No matter what I feel, I must obey. I must again go through the process of being willing to be rejected, ignored, scoffed at -- but then after I go, my heart is so filled with joy at the opportunities to speak to people about Jesus.

Conflict on the Lord's Day

The Lord has recently been convicting me of the need to keep the Lord's Day holy. In one particular matter I remember being asked to attend a certain class. If I didn't attend the class, my wife would not be able to have a homebirth. We didn't want to give the birth in the hospital for several reasons. The only time they offered the class was on a Sunday. I fought so hard in my heart about what I should do. On the one hand I really knew there was so much extra stress on my wife because of the baby. On the other hand, the Lord was reminding me about my promise to keep that day for Him. The dilemma created great tension in my life. I was sweating. I cried out to the Lord.

Somehow when I looked at the problem, I seemed blinded to a solution that seemed so obvious. I just didn't realize that the Lord could help out so easily. However, I risked it. I called and let them know of my problem. The Lord helped me out for the nurse agreed to come and give the lesson privately at our home for a bit more money. My heart cried out in joy for I could please both my Lord and my wife.

On a more practical point, I realized that I can avoid some of these problems if I work out the Lord's standards ahead of time.

2) What does it practically mean for you to fear God?

Fear of Intimacy

"Where was his sovereignty when I needed it? Why did some of my most desperate prayers fall from my lips to the ground unanswered? My heart was filled with fear of God -not the biblical fear of God, but a fear of intimacy with him. I wanted a personal relationship with God, but I didn't want an intimate one. An intimate relationship would give him total control, and a voice out of some dark unexplored region of my heart told me that his control would bring me pain again, more pain than I could bear."

Jack Deere in Surprised by the Voice of God, p. 255

3) What are some of the tough decisions that you need to make so that you continue to fear God?

I find that there are certain periods the Lord does more pruning or shaping of my life. He asks more and more from me. I remember one time that the Lord put it on my heart to give a good amount to a brother in need. I didn't have much extra. But the Lord still wanted me to give. I feared what would happen if I didn't give. I wanted to grow more than have the money. So I gave.

I need to keep being honest with taxes. This seems to be an annual testing! There are so many taxes nowadays. I don't agree with how most of it is spent or collected. But the Lord wants me to be faithful to pay my taxes even as He did.

I am sure you have other experiences. Please send them in, either on this topic or others. Make sure you send the question you are answering. We can help edit if necessary.

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