“It is impossible to restore again to repentance those who have once been enlightened, and have tasted the heavenly gift, and have shared in the Holy Spirit, and have tasted the goodness of the word of God and the powers of the age to come, and then have fallen away, since on their own they are crucifying again the Son of God and are holding him up to contempt. -Heb 6:4-6
It is one thing to reject God before being baptized and receiving faith. It is another thing entirely to sin mortally after having received such great gifts that God gives to those who love him. The author of the Letter to the Hebrews equates it with crucifying Jesus Christ a second time. This is a circumstance in which a healthy fear would help improve our long-term happiness.
Proverbs says that “the fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom” (9:10). While no one likes being afraid, it really is a good thing at the beginning of the spiritual life. Fear keeps us from doing some pretty foolish things. I, for one, would have jumped off a lot more and taller things as a small child and broken many bones had I not had a healthy fear of heights. Fear is a great counter to curiosity, a temptation that can easily lead us to sin for the perceived novelty of it. Every child learns right from wrong in the first place because of fear of punishment from a parent. Fear of the Lord, then, helps us to avoid sin and to do good, but this is only the beginning of wisdom.
Wisdom is the consideration of the highest cause and the right ordering of everything else in relation to that cause (ST II-II.45.1). Fear helps us to recognize God as that highest cause. This is the first step in becoming wise. Further, wisdom perfects love. Those who are wise love better than those who are foolish. This is because love is directed first and foremost to God. After loving God, we love creatures according to their relationship to God. Thus, we love people more than pets. Since the wise know how everything is ordered, they also know how to love appropriately. Therefore, wisdom produces perfect love and “perfect love casts out fear” (1 Jn 4:18). So we have come full circle: from fear to wisdom to perfect love back again to fear, but this time to cast it out.
Once we love, fear is no longer needed. While it may be better never to have been born than to sin after having once accepted Christ, the fear of offending the Lord by sin will eventually lead us to the perfect love of God and eternal happiness with Him in heaven.”
Summa Catechetica, "Neque enim quaero intelligere ut credam, sed credo ut intelligam." – St Anselm, "Let your religion be less of a theory, and more of a love affair." -G.K. Chesterton, "I want a laity, not arrogant, not rash in speech, not disputatious, but men and women who know their religion, who enter into it, who know just where they stand, who know what they hold and what they do not, and who know their creed so well that they can give an account of it."- Bl John Henry Newman, Cong. Orat., "Encounter, not confrontation; attraction, not promotion; dialogue, not debate." -cf Pope Francis, “You will not see anyone who is really striving after his advancement who is not given to spiritual reading. And as to him who neglects it, the fact will soon be observed by his progress.” -St Athanasius, "To convert someone, go and take them by the hand and guide them." -St Thomas Aquinas, OP. 1 saint ruins ALL the cynicism in Hell & on Earth. “When we pray we talk to God; when we read God talks to us…All spiritual growth comes from reading and reflection.” -St Isidore of Seville, “Also in some meditations today I earnestly asked our Lord to watch over my compositions that they might do me no harm through the enmity or imprudence of any man or my own; that He would have them as His own and employ or not employ them as He should see fit. And this I believe is heard.” -GM Hopkins, SJ, "Only God knows the good that can come about by reading one good Catholic book." — St. John Bosco, "Why don't you try explaining it to them?" – cf St Peter Canisius, SJ, Doctor of the Church, Doctor of the Catechism, "Already I was coming to appreciate that often apologetics consists of offering theological eye glasses of varying prescriptions to an inquirer. Only one prescription will give him clear sight; all the others will give him at best indistinct sight. What you want him to see—some particular truth of the Faith—will remain fuzzy to him until you come across theological eye glasses that precisely compensate for his particular defect of vision." -Karl Keating, "The more perfectly we know God, the more perfectly we love Him." -St Thomas Aquinas, OP, ST, I-II,67,6 ad 3, “But always when I was without a book, my soul would at once become disturbed, and my thoughts wandered." —St. Teresa of Avila, "Let those who think I have said too little and those who think I have said too much, forgive me; and let those who think I have said just enough thank God with me." –St. Augustine