The Grip of Fear

Scripture: John 7:1-2, 25-30
March 20, 2015

Some people from Jerusalem said, “Isn’t’ he the one they want to kill?” John 7:25

I believe we all struggle with discerning how it is we are to follow God’s call in our lives.  Dare I say that many of us struggle with discerning what God’s call in our lives is?

We may allow our fears of failure, of losing approval from others, or from being criticized for our choices to keep us from following God.  There is this tension built into John’s gospel that surrounds Jesus and the religious insiders.  

I find these passages hard to read especially in light of the growing anti-Semitism and acts of violence towards Jewish people in Europe.  Texts that speak about the Jews wanting to kill Jesus have fueled Christians throughout history to act violently against Jewish people.  And I know that isn’t why the gospel writer John speaks in such a way.  Instead he is referring to those on the inside of religion who worked against Jesus, who had such a hard time hearing the new thing God was bringing forth in him.

So instead I find it more beneficial and true to the evangelist’s intent to read this passage and others like this by asking, do I live in fear of not gaining approval from those inside the church when I hear God calling me to do something that is outside of the norm?  Am I at times the one who refuses to see the new thing God is doing because the past is more important to me than the present or future thing God is doing? 

Do I fear change more than I fear God?

Prayer:  God help me to be open to your movement and to hand my fears over to so that I can grow in your Spirit.  Amen.


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