The heartless crime that took place last week in Charleston stills saddens me however the families of those victims one by one standing before the killer forgiving him is what moves me the most. When I think about the word fearlessly loving people or fearlessly proclaiming Jesus to this world my heart beats a little faster because there are traces of fear still in me.
The word fearless is defined by Webster as; FREE from fear. I'm not talking about the fear that comes when you watch your favorite show or the fear that follows that moment in which you feel scared. I'm talking about the bold, gutsy, stouthearted and brave moments of showing people Gods love. Those Charleston families define bravery to me because not only did that killer feel the weight of those words but America watched over and over the love of Jesus being made known through their words of forgiveness and I too felt the weight of their words.
I began thinking about Saul in Acts chapter 9. He persecuted Christ followers and approved of them being murdered and yet after he encountered Jesus he began to preach with such boldness. There were some who believed him but it also said the disciples were scared of him and wanted nothing to do with him. Saul's fearlessness wasn't birthed out of approval addiction it was birthed from an inward igniting of a God that's holy and powerful.
Acts 9:27... "And he declared to them how he had seen the Lord on the road and that He had spoken to Him and how he had preached fearlessly at Damascus in the name of Jesus."
He encountered God and something was set off inside him like fireworks. He went from breathing murderous threats to fearlessly proclaiming the name of Jesus. In Mark Batterson's Going All in book it says this powerful statement.
"Jesus didn't die to keep us safe. He died to make us dangerous."
I can't think of a single story in the bible that doesn't have some type of sacrifice, bravery, pain or bold moments with the purpose of moving the name of Jesus forward. Fear has no power in the presence of the Crestor! God knew that someone like Saul had passion and zeal because He created him. He rocked His world and transformed those things to bring glory to Him. The New Testament is basically written by a redeemed jerk who hated Christians. As I speak to girls and women my passion is for them to embrace and walk in FREEDOM so why wouldn't I forever be fighting the bondage of food, body image and shame. Saul had people plotting to Kill him and he would get out before they could strike. I choose to remove those thoughts in my mind or even more disarm the enemy by speaking louder. Today my challenge is that you no longer play it safe. Look to those in front of you in all areas of your life from day in and day out and ask yourself.. How can I boldly, gutsy, fearlessly show them the love of Jesus? For some of you it's a call to forgive. For others it's a call to go ALL in with your heart so you can follow Jesus with your life. Maybe it's declaring freedom even when you know bondage is always lurking.
Tomorrow I leave for my first foreign mission trip. I am excited to fly. I am excited to eat new food. I am excited to be going with people I adore but am I afraid? The answer is Yes but I refuse to let the enemy keep me from declaring this over my trip NO MATTER WHAT!
"Pray also for me, that whenever I speak, words may be given me so that I will FEARLESSLY make known the mystery of the gospel, for which I am an ambassador in chains. Pray that I may declare it FEARLESSLY, as I should."
God is a very BIG God!