EDITOR’S NOTE: This column features lessons and sermons for children from Annette Dammer’s book “Ready, Set, Go!”
We have fears that magnify reality. What can I do the next time fear attacks?
2 Timothy 1:6-7 “Therefore I remind you to stir up the gift of God which is in you through the laying on of my hands. For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind.”
I love how I can count on you to be here. (The lights go out — but in a manner that won’t frighten the little ones.)
Oh my! Well, luckily, I have a flashlight with me. (Flash your light, hit a blank wall so the bat appears to fly and swoop.) Wow! What was that? (Swipe again and again. Try to hide behind one of the smaller children.)
(Laugh and look at the end of your flashlight.) Silly me! It’s only a bit of paper, see? (Quickly pull it off. Que the lights on.)
You know, one night a friend of mine was walking at night and saw a bat swooping around her head. It looked gigantic, so she turned around to the light to see if there were more. It turned out to be a moth in the streetlamp that cast a huge shadow. A harmless little moth!
But the darkness – and her fear – made it huge. Like it would bite her or get tangled in her hair.
I know fear makes moths into bats – and turns the sweet secrets of night into fear and fright. And in the moment, I still forget sometimes. But if I’m busy being afraid, I miss the beauty of God’s world. The song of crickets. The absolute miracle of an undisturbed spider web covered with diamonds of dew just before the sun rises.
I may not be calm every time. I am sure I will still be afraid sometimes. After all, God gave me a healthy sense of fear to keep me from getting hurt. That way I know enough to check things out.
Let’s pray. Father, You gave us fear to keep us safe. Help us to slow down, check things out, and pray for a solution. If we’re afraid of a mere moth, help us to settle down and enjoy the beautiful day You have made. Amen.
Annette Dammer is a columnist, teacher, former children’s minister and author of the book “Ready, Set, Go! A Year of Object Lessons.” This column includes lessons from her book. The e-book is available for free at www.smashwords.com/books/view/1045891. You may reach her at firstname.lastname@example.org