Tuesday, January 15, 2013

January 15, 2013

Good morning all-

I woke up thinking about who I believe is the most courageous person that ever lived.  You might thinks it's someone famous or a family member but it's Jesus!  I had a very courageous mother who fought to stay alive for her grandchildren.  I had a courageous father who worked and provided for his family, while allowing his wife to stay home and raise the family she so loved.  I had a brother who would do anything for anyone and when his time came his friends were courageous and brought him off a mountain.

I have known or heard of many courageous people.  We have police officers, firefighters, armed forces and just regular citizens that have been heros.  Recently, we had administrators of a school and teachers that demonstrated to us what good looks like.  They lost their lives saving the children they so loved.  These are pictures of courage, of fighting against adversity and doing what God gave us to do in this world.  The picture doesn't always look like victory, especially when there is loss of life but there is to Jesus.

Jesus knew long before He would hang on the cross what His fateful day would look like.  He wandered the streets of Nazarene knowing that one day He would face His execution and die on a cross for a crime He didn't commit.  He knew that His father would make Him fulfill His destiny and He knew that Satan would tempt Him until He did.  I don't know too many men or women that given a prophesy of death would take it at face value, more than likely they would run away from it.  For the most part, we are scared to die, to face torture, brutality and death.  I wouldn't call us weak but if given a choice, we would rather die without knowing what happened.

Jesus knew everything and even though He was God there was inner struggle.  In the Garden at Gethsemane, Jesus called to His father to take His cup.  He knew what was going to happen and the man took over.  No man wants to go to prison, be beaten and hang on a cross.  We don't even like it when we have uncomfortable circumstances let alone be tortured, condemned and destroyed for a crime we didn't even commit.  Jesus could have saved Himself that day.  He had the power to do it, instead, He chose to give His life for us.  That is courage, that is strength, that is love.

Like you, I have questioned God.  I have wondered how good people can have bad things happen.  But I always go back to this point, Jesus could have saved Himself, yet He chose to die on the cross with murderers.  He didn't take the easy way out, He took the path of most resistance.  He wanted us to know what good looked like and He wanted us to remember that courage comes from faith.  Not faith in ourselves because we aren't that brave.  We must have faith in Him and then He gives us the strength and courage to move mountains.

I know what faith it takes to be strong and courageous.  There were days during my loss that I wasn't sure I could even get up.  I can remember the first time my phone rang at 6 am after my mom died.  It scared me to death.  For over 21 years, she had called me every morning at 6 am.  Can you imagine?  And one day, it was gone.  The phone didn't ring anymore and my best friend was gone.  Life changed for the Israelites the day that Jesus died.  His followers no longer had Him to steer the boat.  They were found huddled, scared and ashamed.  They didn't know what it meant to live without Him.  Jesus knew and revealed Himself to them.  He gave them the Holy Spirit to guide them while He was in Heaven.  Even in the face of terror, Jesus could be counted on to give His people strength.

I'm working on being strong in Christ and I hope you are too.  Fear unfolds nasty things in us like: worry, disbelief, and weakness.  Jesus is our rock and we can count on Him in any storm.  Our courage is right where He always has been, we just need to believe.  Faith isn't easy.  It wasn't meant to be.  We will endure trials, we will see tough times and we will have to die to ourselves to be His.  If you've accepted Jesus then you know exactly what I mean.  We are His to do what He wants.  Just like in the days before Jesus died, God stipulated the events that would unfold and in a garden Jesus accepted His terms.  Be ready my sisters for our days are numbered and our path is set.  We must be ready to be warriors and we must prepare to be courageous and strong.

Mark 14:36 NKJV:

     And He said, "Abba, Father, all things are possible for You.  Take this cup away from Me; nevertheless, not what I will, but what You will."

My prayer today:

O, Lord, I leave today with these words on our lips.  We wish for Your will not our own.  We know the only way to be courageous and strong is to fulfill Your will on our lives.  Please help us understand our path today.  Please write these words on our hearts!  In Jesus name, AMEN

Until tomorrow...

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