This week is the lead up to Halloween and lots of people will be watching scary movies. Personally, I don’t enjoy them but I know some people do. I think they can watch them because although they’re scary, it’s a way to experience fear without consequences. There is no real threat, once the events of the movie have played out, the credits will roll, the lights will come on and life will resume as normal.
When I think about fear I always think about my favourite bible verse, John 16:33. In it Jesus knows he will be leaving the disciples soon and is reassuring them. He says:
“I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.”
I love this verse because it reminds me that whatever problems I may be facing, whatever problems come my way, that I don’t need to be afraid of them because at the end of the day Jesus has already won. To know this is liberating.
So often characters in scary movies lock themselves behind doors, trapping themselves in order to hide from the creature chasing them only to find it is already waiting for them. So too can we let our fear hold us back, trapping us. Because of fear we can miss out on the many experiences God is offering us. Maybe there are doors you know you’re locked behind out of fear? Maybe there is someone you want to talk to about your faith but you’re afraid of what they’ll think? Maybe there’s a new job or role you feel called to but you’re afraid you’re not good enough? Maybe you want to pray out loud with your small group but you’re afraid you’ll say something wrong? If only we just embraced the fear knowing that there is nothing in this world God cannot overcome. Jesus beat death and by doing that he saved this world, winning it back from disaster.
So between now and when I join Jesus in Heaven, there may be times when I’ll feel like I’m winning and times I’ll feel like I’m losing but ultimately I know I’m on the side of victory.