Tuesday, February 3, 2015

live with courage

Acts 4:13 
Now as they observed the confidence of Peter and John and understood that they were uneducated and untrained men, they were amazed, and began to recognize them as having been with Jesus.

Are you ever shocked by the lack of courage in the people around you?  Because of the work I get to be part of I run in to many people who seek to serve others and make a difference in their community, but it is also tough to find those willing to sacrifice, go the extra mile or take risks.

The Bible is full of stories of courage.  The people we find in both the Old and New Testaments remind us that following God is not an easy task, but the ones who stand out are ones who decided that the norms or status quo wasn’t good enough.  Some gave their lives for their cause.  Some joined groups of other people living with a cause.  Some realized that being a loner was a big deal.

It takes courage to live out the vision and purpose God has given you and us.  Most people don’t know what that purpose is.

What does courage look like?  Try this:

Take the BIBLE at it’s word.  Live it out.  Let the world see the love of God lived out in us.  God gets credit when we empty ourselves: not about me, no claims of my own, not casual about it or callus from other stuff.

How we view God’s church WILL DETERMINE our methods and effectiveness.  How we view His church also determines the risks and courage that we will live with.

Matthew 16:18 nlt
Now I say to you that you are Peter (which means ‘rock’), and upon this rock I will build my church, and all the powers of hell will not conquer it.

The church is so STOPPABLE today and void of much courage because we are not willing to do things that are outside the box.  Few are willing to lock arms with other churches that are doing great things to grow the kingdom of God and not the kingdom of their own church. 

Look through the book of Acts.  Why did the church grow big time?  Do we have the courage to do what the Bible says?

Joshua 1:7 
Be strong and very courageous. Be careful to obey all the instructions Moses gave you. Do not deviate from them, turning either to the right or to the left. Then you will be successful in everything you do.

Acts 27:25 
So take courage! For I believe God. It will be just as he said.

I see myself and try to be an encourager, but I also want to provoke courage into the lives of the people I encourage (to inspire them to live with courage). 

Who will I encourage today?  How will I live with courage?  Who will I challenge to live with courage?

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