I just have to say, God's Word and ways amaze me. I don't have a "read the Bible through in a year" kind of reading plan, but each morning I do read a passage from the OT and a passage from the NT. This morning I started with 1 John 4. The verse that stuck in my brain was 18 which says,
"There is no fear in love, but perfect love casts out fear, because fear involves torment."
Then I turned to my OT reading and I read Psalm 27. Verse one says,
"The LORD is my light and my salvation; whom shall I fear? The LORD is the strength of my life; of whom shall I be afraid?"
More about fear! What fear is in my heart, your heart, that must be cast out?
As Matthew Henry's commentary says (regarding the 1 John passage), "we must here distinguish between the fear of God and being afraid of Him. The fear of God is often mentioned and commanded as the substance of religion. Such fear is consistent with love, yea, with perfect love. But then there is a being afraid of God, which arises from a sense of guilt; and so fear here may be rendered dread: there is no dread in love..." Have you known that guilt? THAT fear? That DREAD? I have. It was as a little girl when the fact of my sin became real to me and I knew that without Jesus I would die and go to hell. That was when the "Faith of my Fathers" became my own. He has been working since and I am happy that I have no dread of God, but I can fear Him, love Him, because of His perfect love. I am thankful for my good and kind God whose love is perfect and is being perfected in me. May you "wait on the LORD; be of good courage, and He shall strenthen your heart; wait, I say, on the LORD!" (Ps 27:14)