by: Rev. Justin Krupsky, Associate Pastor of Family Life
Fear not Mary, fear not Joseph, fear not shepherds. “Fear not,” is a constant refrain in the Gospel Christmas account. It is also a constant refrain through the Gospels and even more so throughout the entirety of Scripture. This Christmas as we unwrap the greatest gift of all, I can’t help but hear these words and share these words with you, “fear not.”
In the original Greek language when the word for fear shows up it is in the present active tense.This means an ongoing state, a constant state, meaning perpetual fear. Someone once said, “The presence of fear is unavoidable, but the prison of fear is optional.”
The one whose birth we are celebrating said, “In this world you will have trouble, but take heart, for I have overcome the world.” Take heart means to have courage. I am sure you have heard this definition of courage, but I will share it with you anyways: “Courage is not the absence of fear, it is moving forward through the fear.”
This Christmas, God wants to give you some courage. He wants to keep you out of the perpetual state of fear. He wants to give you more faith. Faith in Him, the one who not only walked on water, but walked on water while it was storming. He has overcome. Faith in His presence, "Immanuel - God with you", inviting you to walk on the water in the storm together. He is with you. Faith in His promises, His word showing that was faithful and still is today.
This Christmas your pastoral staff prays that you open up God’s perfect love once again revealed to us in a babe lying in a manger. 1 John 4:18 says, “Perfect love drives out fear.” May God drive out your fear this Christmas and give you more faith.