Central UMC Lenoir City
Easter At Central: Jesus > Fear
7:30am Sunrise at Pavillon in Rear of Campus 9:00am Modern Worship 11:00am Traditional Worship
Locations & Times
  • Central UMC Lenoir City Tn
    301 Hickory Creek Rd, Lenoir City, TN 37771, USA
    Sunday 7:30 AM, Sunday 9:00 AM, Sunday 11:00 AM

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Have you ever been afraid? If you are human, it is likely you have. There are all kinds of fears. Some are phobias like clausterphobia (fear of confined spaces). Some are external fears like economic, terrorism, road rage. Some are more personal like fear of failure, or rejection, or change, or disappointing people. What do we do with our fears?

As we conclude this study of the Book of Mark, we look at the last word from the most reliable manuscripts of how Mark ends. It ends wit the word afraid. It seems like an unsatisfactory ending to the book. It doesn't end victorious but ends with fear.

This ending is actually a pointer to the evidence for the resurrection. How else can you describe the changed lives of the people around Jesus. They go from fear to joy and boldness.

The question I want us to think about on this resurrection Sunday is what do we do when we are gripped with fear? How do we loosen the grip of fear in our lives? As we look at the text, there four practical steps we can take:

1) Lower the Temperature - In Mark 16:5, we see the women flooded with emotion. When we are flooded, we get stuck and are often immobilized. The angel says, "Do not be alarmed." The angel is lowering the temperature.

When we are afraid, flooded with emotion, we need to lower the termpature. Breathe, Get in touch with the moment. Be present. Don't think about the future or past or what-if scenarios, be present in our body.

2) Name It - The angel names their fear. They are looking for Jesus. He is not here. He has risen. Naming your fear reduces the intensity and power fear has over your life. When you name it, you can tame it. What are your fearful of right now?

3) Take a Step - The angel tells them to go and tell in Mark 16:7. They take a step outside the tomb but don't actually go and tell. They get stuck. Eventually they do.

When you are immobilized, don't envision the total path, take one step forward. What is one step you can take to reduce a fear you have right now?

4) Turn it Over - In John 20:15-16, we see what happens after Mark's gospel. Mary and women go and tell the disciples. Peter, John, and Mary check out the tomb again. Peter and John leave and Mary lingers. She encounters two angels this time and they ask her "Why are you crying?" She asks the same questions, "Where have you put him?" In other words, she is still stuck.

The risen Jesus now comes to her and she doesn't recognize him. She has the same script and then he simply says her name and it all makes sense. Jesus in his mercy was helping Mary to let go of her fear and recognize that he was with her.

When it comes to fear, we have a choice. We can hold onto our fears or we can give it to God.

What are you fearful of right now? Name it. Take a step to reduce it and give it to God.

The good news of the resurrection is that with God, all things are possible. God loves and cares for you more than you can imagine. The same power that rose Jesus from the dead lives in you. Live in that resurrection power!!!

He is Risen1. He is Risen Indeed!

New Series Staring April 7