I was recently rereading Leslie Vernick’s book How to Act Right When Your Spouse Acts Wrong in preparation for this Fall’s seminar on Overcoming Codependency when I came across this excellent quote from Francois Fenelon about our fears of following God whole-heartedly in hard times.
“What are you afraid of? Of following too much goodness, finding a too-loving God; of being drawn by an attraction which is stronger than self or the charms of this poor world? What are you afraid of? Of becoming too humble, too detached, too pure, too true, too reasonable, too grateful to your Father which is in heaven?… I pray you, be afraid of nothing so much as this false fear — this foolish, worldly wisdom which hesitates between God and self, between vice and virtue, between gratitude and ingratitude, between life and death.” Francois Fenelon in The Royal Way of the Cross
This is an excellent reminder of how our fears distort the character of God in our imagination.
Note: Some may be concerned that this quote would indicate that we will approach the subject codependency from purely a responsibility-based paradigm. In the “Overcoming Codependency” seminar we will examine how to both wisely withstand the suffering side chronically broken relationships and the responsibility-side of valuing the approval of people more than the approval of God.