Lenten Fear Fast–Was Jesus Afraid?

LoveI’ve been wondering lately if Jesus was ever afraid. And I think he was at least once. It was that night before his crucifixion when he asked God to “take this cup from me.” While Jesus was willing, I don’t think anyone can argue that he wanted to be sacrificed for the sin of the world. Luke even says he sweated blood.

So what was he afraid of? I don’t think it was of being beaten or crucified, but of being separated from God the Father. And it wasn’t that he was afraid it might happen. He knew it would. Makes all my fears fade into nothingness.

So WHY was he willing to swallow down that fear and go to the cross? I can only come up with one reason. He loved us that much. He loved me that much. His LOVE was stronger than his FEAR.

Which leads me  to I John 4:16-18 – “And so we know and rely on the love God has for us. God is love. Whoever lives in love lives in God, and God in them. This is how love is made complete among us so that we will have confidence on the day of judgment: In this world we are like Jesus. There is no fear in love. But perfect love drives out fear . . .”

Love is not a feeling, it’s action. In this world we are like Jesus. How can we be like Jesus? By demonstrating our love through our actions. Jesus went to the cross for love. So when I’m afraid, I need to love people all the more. And since my love is often petty and small, I need to let God do the loving.

In a small way, that’s what I’m trying to do by sharing my fear fast with you. I suspect you’re sometimes afraid. Maybe even afraid of the same things I am. And I love you enough to tell you about my fears in hopes it will help yours.

Last week I went through the automatic car wash. It’s the kind where you put your car in neutral and it drags you through a long tunnel with swishing and thumping and soapy water beating down on all sides. Let’s just say it messes with my control issues. What if I want out midway? What if they load me wrong and I get too close to the car in front or back? What if I get stuck? What if I want to change my mind and I can’t?!?

A lot of folks would call this a silly fear, but maybe you’ve experienced it or something similar. So how can I love my way through something like that? I can smile and wave at the kid in the car in front of me who’s maybe a little freaked out, too. I can pray for a friend. I can meditate on God’s love and how He’s inviting me to share it with others. I can express my love for God by singing or thanking him for blessings like a car to wash.

And next thing I know, I’m popping out the end of the wash, car squeaky clean, and feeling–happy. Because when I fill up on love, there’s no room left for fear.

Published by Sarah Loudin Thomas

Author, wife, child of God.

10 thoughts on “Lenten Fear Fast–Was Jesus Afraid?

  1. Of course that made me think about Pat getting stuck in the car wash! She was telling me about going up to kiss the Blarney Stone. Very narrow difficult stairway (100 steps) and Barb thought very near the top that she couldn’t go any further. One can not decide to go back down that way because there is not room to pass the others coming up. Help (love) came in the form of the person in front of her reaching down to help her up those last few steps.

  2. I love this, Sarah. And I think you’re right about Jesus’ fear. I believe he could have walked away and not followed through with his (and the Father’s) plan. And that would have been the end of us as mankind. But out of love, he endured that separation and became our sacrificial Lamb. It’s a love we can receive but never fully understand!

  3. It’s something I’ve been thinking about, off and on, for quite a while.

    My feeling is that He had to put His divine nature aside for the sake of fearing that which we would fear – pain, and death. If He didn’t, we would not have that path over the rapids, to the other side of terror.

    That’s what makes Him compelling for me – not that He could fear things that I can’t fathom, but that the dread I had before going into a contact where I knew I would be hurt or killed – He GOT that. It wasn’t simple for Him. It was tough, but He got through it.

    And why? Duty. It was His job,, just as it’s the job of all of us to face out fears, as they come out of the darkness, for the common and Godly good.

    1. Yes, it was incredibly tough. But I don’t think Jesus went to the cross because it was his duty–his job. He went for pure LOVE. And I, in turn, should face my fears not because it’s my Godly duty, but because I LOVE God and long to honor him.

  4. Loved this Sarah. The idea of loving people even more when I’m afraid? I tend to do the opposite—withdraw. But you speak truth. And the thought of overcoming fear by getting my mind off moi and putting it on someone else in prayer? Such a great way to combat fear.

    Thanks for sharing this, Sarah!

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