Halloween And The Reality Check
He that’s in me is greater than the one in the world?
The question pounding through my head this morning is, "How much do I really believe that ‘He that is in me is greater than the one who is in the world’?"
Why, you might ask, am I wondering this? Shouldn’t someone who has been taught this since she was born know this deeply and never doubt it?
Last night I was reading for a bit before I turned off the light. I read the account of the woman with the issue of blood in the book of Mark.*
I know this story inside and out, but it turns out that my heart needed a better understanding of what happened there.
The Law of the day said that this woman was unclean; she shouldn’t have been out of her house. Everyone in that crowd of people was now unclean because of being close to her when she was sick.
Let’s take a little detour here for a moment. Can you imagine the fear of the people back then? They had no control over this lady making them all unclean. By her disobeying the law, they all had to go thru the process of becoming clean again. The way I understand, it was a tedious process. Gah!!!
Jesus, however, didn’t buy into the fear thing. There’s not a trace of fear in His response to her. There’s only sympathy for her and an offer of peace and freedom.
Jesus wasn’t afraid of being around people that were less than holy. He didn’t stay away from lepers, prostitutes, tax collectors, and ignorant people. He let them pursue Him. He let them into His personal space.
Not only did He let them into His personal space, He loved on them. He valued them. He didn’t treat them as less than anyone else.
This is about to get really real, so if you don’t like real, this your cue to leave.
Today is Halloween. In my history, there are years of not only making sure the front porch light was off but making sure that I wasn’t home in case someone was brave enough to come to the door anyway. There are years of dreading this time of year and praying fearfully over my home and kiddos.
I know-there are a million ways that people process this time of year, and I’m not here making a debate out of it. I’m here to tell my story and what I’m learning right now.
We (my family) never celebrated Halloween, and, being curious what it was all about, I found things to read about it, what it was, and where it came from. Because of dark and evil things that I read and learned about Halloween, I majorly bought into fear.
There was LOTS of fear.
In the last several years, fear has not held me in its vice grip even close to the way it used to, but my heart still needed some deeper understanding.
Jesus feared nothing. Not darkness. Not uncleanness. Nothing.
He knew, in the story of the sick woman we just talked about, that her sickness wasn’t going to touch Him. His cleanness was going to touch HER. His light was going to expel her darkness. His health was going to heal her sickness. His wholeness was going to fix her brokenness.
He knew that what He carried was so much greater than what she carried.
Do I know as deeply as Jesus did that "greater is He who is in me than the one who is the world"? Am I really living like that? If I am, there is not a trace of worry about whether or not the darkness of the earthly realm comes into contact with me. I know that the light I carry always, always has a greater influence over darkness than darkness has on the light.
I don’t know what your thoughts and opinions are about Halloween and how you do or don’t celebrate it, and that’s totally not my point. Nor is my motive to influence you in one way or another.
My motivation is this-what do you believe about who Jesus is in you? What does your life and the way you live it say about your belief system?
We know that Jesus brings peace. Do we know as certainly that when we are feeling fear of any kind, we are being influenced by the one in the world?
Fear of any kind is coming from the one in the world.
If I have Jesus and His peace in me, if I’m willing to get out of my own comfort zone and let Jesus flow and work thru me, His light in me will ALWAYS influence the world instead of the world influencing me.
Here’s my challenge-instead of keeping our distance from people who are "unclean" or unholy or living in blatant sin or needy or scary or just make us feel uncomfortable, let’s ask the famous question "What Would Jesus Do?"
And then let’s do it. Wade into it. Trust that Jesus in you is going to influence whatever is coming from the other person. Believe that, because you are in relationship with Jesus, the Holy Spirit will put the thoughts, words, and understanding into your heart and mouth that you need for the moment.
Let’s start really believing and living out that the One in us is greater in every possible scenario than the one who is in the world.
Because He is.
I needed to let Jesus into my mind and the fortress of fear I had allowed to be built around Halloween.
What is it for you? Where have you bought into the belief that you need stay far away from […fill in the blank…] because it’s not safe?
Fear always comes from the world. Peace and love always come from heaven.
Which is influencing you today?
*The story is found in Mark 5:24-34.