It’s OK to be Scared!
Jesus Prays Before His Arrest
Everyone gets scared. Some fears we outgrow. Some fears remain with us. I understand kids need to learn how to overcome their fears. However, I believe it is important to reassure kids that fear is a part of life. All of us are afraid sometimes. I‘ve always found if I’m able to gather information about the problem, it helps me face my fear. Still there are those times when fear is tough to overcome.
When I was doing my pastoral internship, I was asked to visit a women in the hospital. That was when I met Ginger. Ginger was being treated during her second battle with breast cancer. Now, I want to tell you right off, Ginger didn’t win the battle the second time around but that is a story for another day.
It was a few days before Halloween and Ginger hoped to go home in time to enjoy Halloween with her family. While I was visiting, the doctor came in to tell Ginger something had shown up in her liver and they needed to run more tests. I knew that wasn’t good. The doctor left the room, leaving me with Ginger. She was quiet for a while. Then she looked at me and said, “I’m scared!” Well, of course she was scared! And that’s just what I told her. Who wouldn’t be scared?
Now, Ginger hadn’t been a Christian for very long. She thought her fear showed a lack of faith. If her faith was strong enough, she thought, she would trust God to take care of everything. She wouldn’t be afraid to die. I thought for a moment.
I prayed really hard. I wanted to know what I should say to her. Boy, did God answer my prayer.
I told Ginger that even Jesus had been scared when He faced death. She was surprised.
“Really?” I opened my Bible and read this story to her. I showed her that Jesus ask His Father to take the cup from Him. In other words, He asked God to find a way to save all of us that would allow Him to live. Jesus’ fear was natural. He was facing the unknown. He was facing a terrible death. If Jesus was afraid to die, I asked Ginger, why wouldn’t you be afraid? When I left, Ginger was still afraid but she did feel better.
When you talk to your kids about being afraid, talk to them about Jesus. He was afraid. He prayed. He did what he had to do in spite of His fear. Let your kids know that courage is feeling the fear and doing it anyway. Most important, make sure they know they are never alone when they’re afraid. You are there for them AND Jesus is there for them.
Be strong and of good courage.
1. Talk to your kids about fear. Talk about what scares each of you. Then discuss ways you can each be stronger than your fear.
2. Talk about the power of prayer. Let your kids know how you pray when you are afraid.
3. How do your kids respond when other kids are afraid? Sometimes to hide their own fear, kids will tease another child who is afraid.
4. How do you respond when someone else is afraid? What can you do for them?