years ago, I met a minister here in Waco who has given much of his life toward working with the poor. At lunch one day, I learned that he had a long time relationship with the head
football coach of our local high school. I was in the school gym one day, saw the
coach, and told him about my relationship with his friend. His reply?
â€œHeâ€™s a good man. Heâ€™s got a
street level faith.â€
â€œStreet level faithâ€
something about that phrase that I like:
faith is the faith of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob.
faith is the faith needed for ministry when you find yourself in the middle of
someone elseâ€™s life.
faith is where you live as a person in whom Christ dwells.
faith is a faith that requires courage.
courage to live for the Lord every day at street level. It takes courage to lead people to the
the courage to live and lead is a courage that ultimately comes
from Godâ€™s forever-presence, the Holy Spirit.
Godâ€™s presence has a way of bridling our fear and building our courage.
the many people who God spoke to regarding his presence:
Isaac he said, â€œStay in this land for a while, and I
will be with you and bless you.â€ (Gen. 26:3)
Jacob he said, â€œGo back to the land of your fathersâ€¦and
I will be with you.â€ (Gen. 31:3)
Joseph, the writer of Genesis says that â€œthe Lord was
with Joseph and he prospered and he lived in the house of his Egyptian master
when his master saw that the Lord was with himâ€ (Gen. 29:3)
Moses he said, â€œThe Lord himself goes before you and
will be with you: he will never leave you or forsake you. Do not be afraid. Do not be discouragedâ€ (Dt. 31:8).
Joshua he said, â€œNo one will be able to stand up
against you all the days of your life.
As I was with Moses, so I will be with you; I will never leave you or
forsake you.â€ (Joshua 1:5).
the Israelites, he said, â€œSo do not fear, for I am with
you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God.
I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous
hand.â€ The Lord went on to say to
the same people, â€œFor I am the Lord, your God, who
takes hold of your right hand and says to you, Do not fear; I will help youâ€¦â€ (Isa. 41)
courage to lead in ministry.
to keep going when you feel alone.
not to just â€œsettleâ€ when others would be very happy to do just that.
to not let the fear of failure shut down any initiative we might take.
to face opposition.
to both proclaim (teach and preach) and perform (live out) the Gospel.
to come before the Lord, keeping your eyes on him when you donâ€™t have a clue
about what to do.
The courage to lead in ministry is developed and shaped as we learn to live everyday with courage.
to depend on God when you donâ€™t know what your future holds.
to depend on God when you feel anxious about about your job and it’s uncertainty.
to depend on God when you are nervous about your financial situation.
to depend on God when you are concerned about a family member.
we prepare ourselves to lead with courage is to learn to live with courage
depending on Godâ€™s forever-presence each day.
What about you? What has been particularly helpful to you as you have faced anxious moments?