Fear of the Lord

01-12-2020(Being) Catholic MattersDavid Lins

In the tenth chapter of Acts, we hear Peter say some interesting things. “In truth, I see that God shows no partiality.” “Whoever fears him and acts uprightly is acceptable to him.”

The ramifications are pretty strong. God doesn’t love you more because of your gender, your race, your age, your political party, your nationality, or even your religion.

It’s true.

He can’t love you any more than he already does.

This doesn’t mean your religion doesn’t matter.

It means being Catholic only matters if you are actually living like a Catholic is supposed to: fearing the Lord and acting uprightly. Easy enough, right? Well...

It is important to understand fear of the Lord is not running and hiding because God is scary. It is awe or profound respect for the absolute majesty of God.

“[Fear of the Lord] does not mean being afraid of God: we know well that God is Father, that he loves us and wants our salvation, and he always forgives, always; thus, there is no reason to be scared of him! Fear of the Lord, instead, is the gift of the Holy Spirit through whom we are reminded of how small we are before God and of his love and that our good lies in humble, respectful and trusting self-abandonment into his hands. This is fear of the Lord: abandonment in the goodness of our Father who loves us so much (Pope Francis, General Audience, June 11, 2014).

Living uprightly is a bit easier to explain. Go to 1 Corinthians 13:4-8 and substitute your name everywhere you see the word “love” and read it out loud. Here. I’ll make it easy (Remember - your name - out loud):

_______ is patient, _______ is kind. _______ does not envy, _______ does not boast, _______ is not proud. _______ does not dishonor others, _______ is not self-seeking, _______ is not easily angered, _______ keeps no record of wrongs. _______ does not delight in evil, but _______ rejoices with the truth. _______ always protects. _______ always trusts, _______ always hopes, _______ always perseveres. _______ never fails.

Questions? Comments? Email David at dlins@oloj.org.

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