Daily we are told by scrolling through our news sources, perusing our Facebook feeds, or listening to well-intentioned friends that we should fear ‘others’ lurking in the world. We fear strangers, we fear our neighbors, we fear those who vote differently, we even fear those who don’t parent the same way we do.
Do we understand how fear is shaping our lives?
Fear is ultimately what creates polarization─Us vs Them. We’ve all experienced the real force of polarization in our family riffs, broken friendships, and split church communities but emphatically our political climate has leveraged our fears─making us see each other as monsters.
In the words of the Apostle John “perfect love casts out fear” (1 John 4:18). Love is the peculiar way forward in our fearful times.
Really, is love strong enough?
First, our current ideas of love must undergo a full-on renovation from their collapse into greeting card well-wishes, social justice hashtags, and feel good spiritual cliches. We must dive in and decode the way of love in the actual life of Jesus. God did not bring healing to our world while keeping an arm’s length. We detest our enemies─Jesus befriends them. We distance from those unlike us─Jesus shares a meal with them.
Jesus waged war against fear with the weapon of enemy-love.
The world around us is aching for this alternative─the path beyond snap judgments, generalizations, and feelings of repulsion we feel towards each other.
With a pinch of psychology, a tablespoon of neurology, and a bucket full of biblical stories Dan White Jr will take us on a healing journey from Fear to Love.