No Fear in Love (a Halloween devotion)

October 8th, 2012

During the weeks and days leading up to Halloween, fear is a hot commodity. This simple devotional activity explains to youth (and adults) that God's love drives out fear.

Scripture: "There is no fear in love, but perfect love drives out fear, because fear expects punishment. The person who is afraid has not been made perfect in love." (1 John 4:18 CEB).

Preparation: scary masks, a wipeboard or large sheets of paper, markers

Ask one of more of the youth to wear the scary masks. Then invite the group to talk about the greatest fears they have in life. Write these fears on a wipeboard or on large sheets of paper.

Then say: Most people associate Halloween with fear—fear of death, fear of dying, fear of evil. But when we come to know the true power and trustworthiness of God, many of the fears we have in life melt away. Fear, however, is a natural and good feeling. Without fear we would make many stupid mistakes, hurting ourselves and others in the process. Without fear, we would not have enough wisdom to flee when true dangers present themselves.

One of the ways people deal with their fears is by making fun of the fear itself. That, in fact, is part of the origin of Halloween, which means "all hallows eve." People were naturally afraid of death and dying, and so they decided to face their greatest fear by poking fun at death. In 1 John, we are told that perfected love drives out fear. That is to say, when we become certain of God's love, we don't have to be afraid anymore. It's as if God is the parent who comes in at night and tucks us in, turns on the night light, and tells us that there are no monsters. In God's great love, all fear melts away.

We can remove our fears by serving others. When we abandon our lives in service, we often discover that our fears lessen as our friendship and love deepens. As you and I think about our fears now, I hope that we will see that just as God has protected and redeemed those who have come before us, God will protect and redeem us, too. Even from death itself!

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