1 John 4-5, Leviticus 4-6

1 John 4:18 – There is no fear is love, but perfect love casts out fear.  For fear has to do with punishment, and whoever fears has not been perfected in love.

Dear Father, I am your child, your beloved child, with whom you are well-pleased.  You love me. And yet, I find myself worried and afraid. I often find myself overwhelmed and stressed. It’s the pressure of duties and responsibilities that overwhelm me.  But deeper still, it is my inborn pressure to make you happy.  And the better I know your will the more this pressure grows.  I know better and more clearly how it is exactly that you want me to love other people.  And the pressure to perform only grows.  But your love for me drives out my fear.  Your love for me takes away the pressure.  You wrap your arms around me with your Word and remind that I was loved fully and completely even before I did a single thing.  You wrap your arms around me with the waters of baptism to remind me that I am clean and holy before I even took a spiritual step.  You wrap your arms around me at the Supper to assure that your love for me will not be ended by my failure to love. And in those moments fear dissipates and disappears.  Help me to stop in those moments and truly appreciate the love you have for me.  Help me to enjoy your embrace and your promise.  Your love casts out fear from my heart.  Amen.

Nothing you can do will make God love you more; nothing you do will make God love you less.