DAY 18 - DON'T BE ALARMED!

But the angel said, “Don’t be alarmed. You are looking for Jesus of Nazareth, who was crucified. He isn’t here! He is risen from the dead! Look, this is where they laid his body. Now go and tell his disciples, including Peter, that Jesus is going ahead of you to Galilee. You will see him there, just as he told you before he died.” The women fled from the tomb, trembling and bewildered, and they said nothing to anyone because they were too frightened.

MARK 16: 6–7 (NLT)

OUR DEVOTIONAL

Throughout my life I’ve heard the phrase, “If your dreams don’t scare you, they’re not big enough, they’re not God-sized!” There’s truth to this, but it doesn’t mean we walk in fear, it means we give our fears to God, and open ourselves to whatever He might do in our lives. And then when He does the impossible, we praise Him and we share the good news! We don’t allow fear and doubt to set in our minds.

For me, I find that I can be alarmed when God does something I’m not expecting, even if it’s a good thing. I can only imagine the thoughts going through the minds of the women who found Jesus’s tomb empty. They may have thought that His body was stolen, or some other crazy unexpected thing. Even after the angel told them not to be alarmed, they still left the tomb afraid and trembling. I know I’ve had similar reactions when God does hugely unexpected things in my life. I’ve been left feeling stunned when God has fulfilled dreams in my heart that I didn’t even know I had.

Then there are the dreams that we do expect God to fulfill, and we’re shocked when they actually happen. We pray for a healing, an answer, a sign, or an opportunity, and then God does it, but yet we find ourselves feeling afraid and doubting. In Luke chapter 24, we read that even when the women told the disciples about what they saw and heard at Jesus’s tomb, the disciples didn’t initially believe it. Even when Jesus appeared to them in the flesh after His resurrection, the disciples were initially frightened and in disbelief.

Whether we are praying for that God-sized dream, or God blesses us with one unexpectedly, we don’t have to be alarmed! Not in the waiting, nor in the fruition. It’s normal and natural to be afraid of the journey God might take us on, but we don’t stay afraid; we lay down our fears at the feet of Jesus, and embrace whatever future God would have for us!

FAMILY MOMENT

Play Pictionary! Take turns drawing your God-sized dreams, and have family or friends guess what they are. Then discuss them and pray over one another.

PRAYER & REFLECTION

  1. Can you think of a time in your life when God did something unexpected and you were alarmed?
  2. What about a time when God did exactly what He said He would do, or answered a prayer exactly as you hoped, and you were still shocked when it happened?
  3. What fears do you need to give to Jesus when thinking about your future and God-sized dreams?

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