26 August 2013
"The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom" (Psalm 111:10a).
"Behold, God is my salvation; I will trust and not be afraid" (Isaiah 12:2).
Verses that speak of fear always grab my attention. These two, from my daily devotions, speak directly to the heart of fear. The only thing to be feared, i.e. "to stand in awe of," is the Lord...and this is a GOOD thing. It helps to keep one grounded and humble and ready to 'receive' wisdom versus doling out. The second quote is a remedy (albeit simplified) for fear. Those who are able to allow themselves to be grounded in God (fearfully) and trust in God's love for them (salvation) will not be afraid. Period. Logically, if the greatest thing to be feared is ultimately "that which loves us unconditionally" then everything else is powerless. But since my head seldom rules over my heart, my emotional understanding is that insomuch as my heart dwells in God (qua loving-kindness) I have little room left to give over to focus on fears, real or imagined. At least that's the idea as I understand it.
In my ongoing studies today I found a quote from the writings of Baha'u'llah, the founder of the Baha'i faith which seemed to be a variant on Psalm 111:10a.
"The beginning of all things is the knowledge of God, and the end of all things is strict observance of whatsoever hath been sent down from the empyrean of the Divine Will that prevadeth all that is the heavens and all that is on the earth."
Okay...I had to look up 'empyrean.' It is an ancient term which refers to the realm of Divine Fire/Light that lays beyond this mortal world. In the picture below we see a traveller peering into the Empyrean beyond the dome of the sky. Once one has seen true light, there remains no darkness.