Does Love Cause Fear?
By Barbara Linek
If you’d asked me a year ago, I would have said I had no fears. I was not afraid of dying, illness, job loss, or the big bad wolf. Since then, things have changed. No, I am not talking about this pandemic. With the coronavirus, I am cautious but not scared.
What has changed recently, you ask? I got a dog. I am crazy in love with this little dog. And she loves me. Now fear has entered the picture. I watch her like a hawk when she is romping joyfully in the backyard. I feel the need to protect her because she is small and afraid of people. I imagine how lost I would feel if she ran away or was stolen. One episode is seared in my memory. I’d only had her three weeks when she wiggled out of her harness and, thrilled by her newfound freedom, ran straight toward a busy road. Frightened, I screamed “TREATS!” as loud as I could. And miraculously, I reached into my bag and held high a bag of her favorite treats. That was enough to grab her attention, and she turned back before she got run over by a car. The terror I felt in those few seconds was like nothing I’ve ever experienced.
That terror brings us to the question: does love cause fear? Or is it attachment? Perhaps with the people in my life, I love them but feel less attached. I trust God to care for them. With this little dog, I have a desperate attachment and don’t trust her to anyone’s care. What is your experience? Can you love and let go? Or does love strike fear in your heart?