Saturday, October 30, 2010

Be Strong and Couragious!

Fear has gripped our nation. People are afraid of a variety of things...with good reason in many cases. I am afraid of many things, but I have vowed not to let my fear overcome me. I love the beginning of Joshua where the Lord speaks these words to Joshua: "Be strong and courageous...only be strong and very courageous" (Josh. 1:6, 7).

One of the fears I have seen develop since the attacks against the USA on September 11, 2001 is the fear of going to Mexico. It's easy to make excuses for not going because there are valid reasons to be concerned. But I have been guilty of not going because my fear has gotten the best of me.

On Saturday, October 23, Valley Baptist Church made its first "house" building trip since I have restarted Valley Baptist Church. Making this trip was amazing! I am so blessed by the whole body. We had many volunteers go, many givers who made the trip possible, and many people praying for us while there.

We trusted upon the LORD and He kept us safe...even though I am challenged not to pray the prayer of safety after reading these words by Francis Chan in Crazy Love:

We are consumed by safety. Obsessed with it, actually. Now, I'm not saying it is wrong to pray for God's protection, but I am questioning how we've made safety our highest priority. We've elevated safety to the neglect of whatever God's best it, whatever would bring God the most glory, or whatever would accomplish His purposes in our lives and in the world. Would you be willing to pray this prayer? "God, bring me closer to You during this trip, whatever it takes..."

That is exactly the prayer I prayed that morning as we left the parking lot of Valley Baptist Church at 5am with our group. I believe He answered our prayer that very day.

We had an awesome time at Caravan Ministries learning about God's work to all people groups and our responsibility in fulfilling the Great Commission. I saw a quote on the wall of their building by John Piper I thought was really good, "Go, send, or disobey."

We had such a blessed time and valuable lessons were learned by all. As a father, I was especially blessed to see my 4 year old daughter's heart open to God's love for all people. I am glad fear didn't keep me from letting my family to go.

Pondering my courage as a father made me think of Joshua. I find it interesting that the book of Joshua opens with the words of God, "Be strong and courageous...only be strong and very courageous" (Josh. 1:6, 7) and it ends with Joshua's words,

"But as for me and my house, we will serve the LORD" (Josh. 24:15).

May Joshua's words be the stand of my family and yours!


Joshua said...

I had the same fear as well. I am not only worry about safety but food poisoning, as the ladies in my house have weak immune system. But God is good and He kept us safe and healthy.

Gunnar Hanson said...

Oh food poisoning...that is a good point. That is always a fear when eating around the world! God is good!