Chapter 17

What Has You Paralyzed?

Clinging to Diving Board

Matthew 9:4-5: “And Jesus knowing their thoughts said, Wherefore think ye evil in your hearts?
For whether is easier, to say, Thy sins be forgiven thee; or to say, Arise, and walk?

(Also see Mark 2:1-12 and Luke 5:17-26)


1. What are some of the reasons people become paralyzed by fear?

2. Give a couple of real life examples of people begin frozen by fear. If possible, share some real life experiences of your own or someone you know, rather than the examples shared in this lesson.

3. What are some things you could do to shake free of this paralysis?

4. One of our biggest fears relates to what others might think or say about our goals.  It is easy to feel intimidated around powerful people. King David, who knew what it felt like to be afraid of powerful people who sought to destroy him, once wrote, "I sought the Lord, and He heard me, and delivered me from all my fears" (Psalm 34:4). 

Jesus did not fear the fierce opposition of the Pharisees, or the threats of the Jewish leaders, because He knew that nothing could wreck God’s eternal plans, processes or outcomes. Jesus taught His disciples whom they should fear, and whom they should not fear.  In Luke 12:4-5, He said ...

  a) I will tell you, my friends, do not be afraid of
  b) But I will show you whom you should fear:
  Jesus was warning His followers that they must be ready to face persecution.  He knew that all of them, except John, would die martyr’s deaths for Him. He also knew of His own coming suffering.  But He did not let fear stop Him in His tracks or block Him from pursuing His ministry. 

5. Read Luke 12:22-31.  The worry many people have over the success or failure of their plans is rooted in a low understanding of their value before God. They don’t comprehend how much He loves and cares for them.  In verses 24-26, what three questions did Jesus ask in succession relating to worry and fear.

6. According to Luke 12:31, what must be our top priority when starting a new project?

7. Who will give us comfort and renew our hope, when things are not looking so good for success? (2 Thess. 2:16-17)

8. When we are about to begin a new project, we should begin with prayer, asking the Lord for guidance and wisdom, and that He bless our efforts so that we see success. Too many go through the motions, but don’t really believe God will help them. 
  a) What all-important question did Jesus ask the blind men in Matthew 9:28?
  b) In verse 29, Jesus said their healing would come according to
  c) In other words, their healing would come

9. Is it possible that people are afraid that God is not willing to help them succeed? Do they wonder if their project is too big or too small for Him to bother with?  When they’re facing major career decisions, wanting to stretch their wings, do some think God isn’t interested in their concerns? Do they think He is too busy? If so, they could not be more wrong.
  a) God continually calls us to come to Him with our
    and find for our souls. (Matthew 11:28-29)
  b) He invites us to cast our
    on Him because He cares. (1 Peter 5:7)
  c) He invites us to come to His throne and ask for mercy and grace to help us in our time of ...
    . (Hebrews 4:16)
  d) He will be our
    in sorrow when our heart is faint. (Jeremiah 8:18)
  e) He offers strength when we are
    . (Philippians 4:13)
  f) He heals the
    and binds up their wounds. (Psalm 147:3)
  g) He says we should call upon Him in the day of
    , and He will us,
    and then we will Him. (Psalm 50:15)

10. Add one more verse to this list that shows how much God cares for us, and wants to help us succeed.
(Thought question – answers will vary.)
Continue to Chapter 18

Back to Table of Contents