I'm pretty stoked for a day of rest today. After yesterday's physical and mental mauling, I can certainly use a break. The plan for the day is to treat my body to as much spa treatment as I can. :) For me, that usually means an extra dose of Icy Hot, but at least it's a start. haha! :)
This past week at our leadership retreat, we were challenged to nail down our life's core values--those principles that would serve as guiding filters for our actions. On Tuesday night, I sat down for some time with the Lord, and He revealed five core values that apply uniquely to me and to who He created me to be. The first one: Courage.
We've all heard Ambrose Redmoon's quote that courage is not "the absence of fear, but rather the judgement that something else is more important than fear," and that is something I'm coming to understand. Friends, I think we'd all agree that this training period has been changing me in many ways. And I think one of things the Lord has been addressing is my fear. That sin and cancer that keeps us from His highest and best.
It may sound absurd that someone with so many fearful tendencies would select Courage as a core value, but I can't think of anything better.
In my quiet time this morning, I went through Scripture and prayed for a verse to apply to each value. Not surprisingly, Joshua 1:9 was what the Lord gave me for Courage. It says, "Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous! Do not tremble or be dismayed, for the LORD your God is with you wherever you go."
This is the thing. It's not about just being courageous. God doesn't ask Joshua just to cast off his feelings and barge ahead for no reason. God tells Joshua to be strong and courageous for a specific reason: because HE was with him.
It's the same for me and for all of us. God wants us to get to the point where we can face our fears and walk toward them, not because we are just that strong mentally or because we're bold, but because we know that He is with us in all things. He promised in other verses to never leave or forsake us. He promised over and over that He would be faithful. In fact, He makes it so clear in so many verses of Scripture that we almost have to purposely avoid verses on His faithfulness and love if we don't want to see them.
For me, it's not that I am just supposed to walk out my door every morning full of pride and arrogance and confidence that I can run. On my own, I can't do that. I'll be nervous, anxious and fearful every time. But what I can do is know and believe that God is with me. I can be strong and courageous knowing that I'm not alone and that His strength is inside me. He is with me wherever I go, whatever I do. And, because of that, I can trust that no matter what happens, He has a plan.
Friends, today, I want to challenge us regarding courage in our lives. Do we believe that God is with us wherever we go? I do believe that. I know it because I've experienced it. If I had your attention for 72 hours I'd have just enough time to begin to scratch the surface of the start of the beginning of the introduction to God's faithfulness in my life. (Well, maybe I'd need more time if I'm going to tell you that much. haha!) But if we believe that God is faithful, then let's all face our fears and accept His calling to be strong and courageous.
-For healing on my right foot.
-For healing on my left foot's blister.
-For the upcoming week and the 6-miler tomorrow morning.
-For our troops--that they may be strong and courageous, and that they may know the Lord is with them wherever they go.
-For Military Ministry and their ability to communicate His truth to our service men and women.
-For rest today.
-For the last three weeks of fundraising! Want to give to Military Ministry and spread the hope of Christ to our troops? Go here: http://www.militaryministry.org/home/running-for-the-troops/
Thanks so much, friends! You guys are awesome! :)