Courage


 A few weeks ago I buy a wooden plaque that reads, “What if we practiced courage every single day?” I feel the first birth pangs of fear as I set it above my kitchen sink. I am not courageous, but I want to be. So I set it eye level in plain view while washing dishes, doing mundane mama things.

I hear God whisper in the quiet, “Be courageous in the things I call you to do.” Jesus spoke these exact words to the paralytic man on the mat (see Matt. 9:10), the woman who bled for years (see Matt 9:22), the centurion with an ailing servant, Peter who walked on water (see Matt 14:27).

I am just like them. You are too. Sometimes we need refreshing. We need Jesus to remind us not to be afraid but to be courageous. We are made in the image of Christ and there is no room for fear, no room for timidity.

A month ago, well meaning church folks approach me at a BBQ. “Are you going downtown to pray with people at that old motel by yourself?” they ask with inquisitive minds.

“Well, yes,” I explain.

“You know you really shouldn’t…it’s too dangerous,” the normalization continues. Much to my surprise my heart doesn’t break as swift as a brittle stick under hard words like usual. No hysteric edge, no deflated will. In fact, the Spirit breathes the words of Matthew 10:16-18 like a rushing wind through my heart.

“Stay alert. This is hazardous work I’m assigning you. You’re going to be like sheep running through a wolf pack, so don’t call attention to yourselves. Be as cunning as a snake, inoffensive as a dove. Don’t be naive. Some people will impugn your motives, others will smear your reputation—just because you believe in me,” (MSG).

People say taking the Gospel downtown to the slum is dangerous. They ask if I’m afraid. I tell them I am much more afraid of remaining comfortable than I am of saying “yes” to what God commands me to do, for all of us to do.

I’m more afraid of living a complacent life in a self serving society and failing to follow Jesus than I am of any danger I may experience in downtown Reno.

Jesus called his followers to be a lot of things but I have yet to find here he warned them to be safe. We aren’t called to be safe. We are, however, promised that when we take his Word into not-so-nice places, God is with us. To me, there is no better place to be than in HIS hands.

Little did I know, days later I would find myself clutching his hands as I entered hard places where courage was a requirement. I didn’t know it then but instead of God turning my world upside down, he was turning it right side up.

 

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8 Responses

07.02.12

You are beautiful example of godly courage! And I don’t think anyone will succeed at normalizing you. I love your last line…

“I didn’t know it then but instead of God turning my world upside down, he was turning it right side up.”

So like God to do that… to do the complete opposite of what we expect! Love you!!!

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07.02.12

Thank you for being bold about sharing your experience – I am praying that I will fear being complacent so much more than danger!

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07.02.12

All I have to say is……AMEN! You nailed it Kelli.
Love,
Laura

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07.02.12

As always your blogs are meaningful thank you Kelli
Desirayd recently posted..Year of Jubilee and RetributionMy Profile

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07.02.12

Girl, carry on!

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07.02.12

This is one of the most powerful changes in your heart that god has done-wanting to be courageous for Jesus. Love when you say, “I tell them I am much more afraid of remaining comfortable than I am of saying “yes” to what God commands me to do, for all of us to do.” I am learning to be less afraid of what people think of ME and more afraid that they don’t think of HIM! Love you!

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Thank your for the reminder to be courageous in Jesus! Wise words. Where did you get the great plaque!

Blessings~
Shari

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07.02.12

“God turning my world upside down, he was turning it right side up.” SO TRUE. Great post, Kelli
Eileen recently posted..Front Porch PromisesMy Profile

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