BEHIND THE SCENES
Karen Stiller of Ottawa, Ont., and
Bill Fledderus of Hamilton, Ont., are senior
editors of Faith Today.
Perfect love drives out fear, we read in 1 John 4: 18. We need such reminders that “the one who is in you [our
God of love] is greater than the one
who is in the world” (1 John 4: 4).
And so do many of the people in the
stories in this issue.
• Christian parents who are fearful
for their children after divorce.
• Christians who become so fearful of the extreme changes in our
society that we withdraw from
cultural engagement into judgmental isolation.
• Anabaptists fearing for their lives
in the Protestant Reformation.
(As we celebrate the 500th anniversary of the Reformation, we
can’t ignore related murderous
• People in South Sudan driven
empty handed from their homes
by civil war and famine.
Even when such major fears don’t
weigh on us, we all know even small
fears can hamper our life of faith –
fear about inviting someone to an
Alpha course, or fear we don’t have
enough skills or available energy and
time to accept a new leadership
position in our local congregation.
To be fair fear isn’t always bad.
It’s a normal emotion that warns us
to avoid dangerous situations or
motivates us to prepare more fully
instead of stepping out too soon.
Fear is appropriate when faced
with a militia in South Sudan or
Studies show we’re right to fear
for children of divorce in our communities.
But thank God for the Comforter,
the Holy Spirit, ready to minister to
us in our fear, often using fellow
believers, our spiritual family, to
love us through those situations.
When we ask God He’ll help us
discern about that Alpha invitation
or new leadership position. And we
can trust that if He is calling us into
something, He will also equip us
and sustain us through it.
He might even use what we learn
reading Faith Today to help us make
sense of the scary situations that
will always be part of our world
until Christ returns.
God calls us out of fearful with-
drawal and paralysis into loving
action. Admittedly, it’s an ongoing
process. As 1 John 4: 17 (NLT) says,
“As we live in God, our love grows
more perfect. So we will not be
Admittedly it takes time to “test
the spirits” (1 John 4:1) and figure
out what a loving action might look
like in a situation. And living out
that loving action can be difficult,
Throughout it all we pray God
will bless you and encourage you,
even through the stories you read
in Faith Today. /FT
to us in our
Not ruled by fear
God’s love is stronger
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September / October 2017
Volume 35 • Number 5
The Evangelical Fellowship of Canada
Bill Fledderus, Karen Stiller
Janice Van Eck
Jeff Dewsbury, David Guretzki, Alex Newman,
Carolyn Arends, James A. Beverley,
Bruce J. Clemenger, Kevin Flatt,
John G. Stackhouse Jr.
Joel Arndt, Allison Barron, Terry Burman,
Pye Chew, Darryl Dash, Chrissy Dennis,
C. David Donaldson, Julie Fitz-Gerald,
Rick Franklin, Terry Hiebert, Keith Knight,
Matthew Forrest Lowe, Craig Macartney,
Alex Newman, Anna Robbins, Marian Van Til
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