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Courageous Living

By Mickey Keith on April 25, 20140 Comments
The journey of a thousand miles begins with one step”. 
When Neil Armstrong landed on the moon in the historic NASA space project, he declared, “One small step for man; one giant leap for mankind.” 
History is filled with stories of adventurers, men and women who dared to dream; who dared to explore and discover.  We love to read of dreamers, navigators, conquerors, who often not knowing what the future held, launched into the unknown to fight battles, slay dragons and win victories!
In 1952, Sir Edmund Hillary spoke to an auditorium filled with students and teachers about his failure to climb Mt. Everest.  He stepped to the edge of the platform and pointing at the image of the mountain on a map, said, “You’ve beaten me this time, but next time I’ll beat you because you’ve grown all you’re going to grow, and I’m still growing.”  The next year, 1953, Hillary and Tenzing Norgay became the first men to conquer Mount Everest after 25 years of failure by others.
We also remember Orville and Wilbur Wright and Amelia Earhart, all pioneers in the world of aviation.
In the church around the world today is a generation of committed believers who are willing to give their lives on a foreign field.  They are willing to lay aside the comforts of home to take risks for the Gospel!  You can see something in their eyes when they stand before me at commissioning or ordination services. It can be felt when I speak at their Bible School graduations .  You can hear God's call when they show you the areas they are evangelizing or the church they are planting.
I know that I may never see some of them again. They are going to Asia, to the Middle East, to Africa, where they will face opposition from false religions and demonic governmental leaders. the extreme conditions and harsh environment will claim some of them.  Many of them will face martyrdom for the Gospel’s sake.  Turtullian, the early church father said, “The blood of the martyr is the seed of the Gospel.”
But there is a generation of people who are following the call of God with conviction!
We need more William Careys, Lottie Moons, David Livingstones who will sell out for God’s purposes and plan!
William Carey- “The father of modern missions” was an English Baptist missionary. Born in 1761, he helped to found the Baptist Missionary Society, the first self sustaining missionary society.  He lived in India where he founded a college, numerous schools, and translated the Bible into at least 5 Indian dialects.  As a child, he taught himself Latin; as a teen, he taught himself Greek. He also learned Hebrew, Italian, Dutch and French, as he worked as a cobbler.  His natural gift for language served him well as he later would translate the Bible for unreached people groups.
Lottie Moon –Born on a Virginia plantation in 1840, Lottie never grew taller than 4 ft 3 inches.  She could speak Latin, Greek, French, Italian and Spanish, fluent in Hebrew, she also became expert in Chinese.  She spent over 40 years in China, never married, and has become a symbol of missions commitment among Christians around the world. Since 1888, the Lottie Moon Missions offerings have reached $1.5 billion. (SBC)
David Livingstone-  Born in 1813, his name has become synonymous with a life of commitment to Christ and His Kingdom. A hard working Scottish boy, he dreamed of going to China as a missionary, but war closed the door. Instead, while studying medicine in London, he heard London Missionary Society missionary Robert Moffat, on leave from South Africa.  Moffat spoke of an area to the north in Africa’s central jungle, “ the smoke of 1,000 villages, where no missionary had ever been.”  His passion to abolish slavery, his medical training and his love for the Gospel, made Livingstone one of the world’s best known missionaries.  He died in Africa, and asked that his heart be buried there.
Unfortunately, too many of us live a life void of adventure.  We seem to be content with the daily grind.  We think the life of faith is for someone else to live…for someone we can never become!
Where are the heroes?  Where are the twenty first century champions who will dare greatly for the Kingdom of God? 
 Jesus said, “… the kingdom of Heaven has been forcefully advancing and FORCEFUL men lay hold of it! (as a precious prize-sought with ardent zeal & intense exertion.)” Matthew 11:12 AMP
Where are the men & women of faith, who please God by trusting in Him? Hebrews 11:6 “Without faith it is impossible to please Him…”
 Where are the Kings of industry who will fight the dragon every week, and bring the spoil to the house of God weekly so that the priest can lay it at the Master’s feet?
You see, the enemy’s lie is that our best days are behind us…we cannot buy into that lie!  I challenge you to DREAM BIG…
D.L Moody once said, “If God is your partner, make your plans BIG”!
Instead of cowering to the pressure of our culture, Christians need to become a force for righteousness!
 People of courage make a way where there is no way!
C.S Lewis said, “The safest road to hell is a gradual one.”
We've been lulled into settling for average so long...it seems acceptable. 
But I believe that in the heart of every man...woman and young person, there is a desire burning to MAKE A DIFFERENCE!  Not just to make a living, but to live a DESTINY!
Some of the most courageous people in history were people who could have ended up in the quagmire of mediocrity---Abraham Lincoln was a failure most of his life until he became president…Stonewall Jackson was a failing teacher at VMI, but he blossomed in the heat of battle… D. L. Moody was an uneducated shoe salesman who became one of the most famous preachers of the 19th century.  He established ministries that are still active and vibrant today!
The heroes of the Bible were all unique, not cookie cutters...they were mavericks!  That’s what we need today.  They refused to be put in a religious box.  Because of their faith!  They weren't afraid to leave their homes…walk on water…rebuke kings and rulers…or pray for miracles!
By faith Abel offered the acceptable sacrifice…by faith Enoch walked with God…By faith Noah built an ark… by faith Abraham left his home and traveled to an unknown land.
  He pulled up roots, leaving everything familiar to obey the voice of God!
Genesis 11:31 “Terah took his son Abram, his grandson Lot, son of Haram, and his daughter in law Sarai, the wife of Abram, and together they set out from Ur of the Chaldeans to go to Canaan, But when they came to Haran, they settled there.  Terah lived 205 years, and he died in Haran.
Unfortunately, Terah, the father of Abram settled in Haran. (A dry place)…and missed the blessings of God for his generation!  Don’t settle for less!  Trust God for victory!  Don’t be satisfied, and settle in a DRY PLACE!
It was in Haran, (The dry place) that God spoke to Abram, and made a covenant with him of blessing.
Gen. 12:1-3  AMP “Now (in Haran) the Lord said to Abram, Go for yourself (For your own advantage) away from your country, from your relatives and your father’s house to the land that I WILL SHOW YOU. 
Verse 2 And I will make of you a great nation, and I will bless you (with abundant increase of favors) and make your name famous and distinguished, and you will be a blessing (dispensing good to others). Verse 3 “I will bless those who bless you and curse those who curse you! In you will all the families and kindred of the earth be blessed! 
Hebrews 11:8-10 AMP  8 [Urged on] by faith Abraham, when he was called, obeyed and went forth to a place which he was destined to receive as an inheritance; and he went, although he did not know or trouble his mind about where he was to go.9[Prompted] by faith he dwelt as a temporary resident in the land which was designated in the promise [of God, though he was like a stranger] in a strange country, living in tents with Isaac and Jacob, fellow heirs with him of the same promise. [Gen. 12:1-8.]10 For he was [waiting expectantly and confidently] looking forward to the city which has fixed and firm foundations, whose Architect and Builder is God.”
Gal. 3:6-9 NIV  So also Abraham “believed God, and it was credited to him as righteousness.”7Understand, then, that those who have faith are children of Abraham. 8Scripture foresaw that God would justify the Gentiles by faith, and announced the gospel in advance to Abraham: “All nations will be blessed through you.”9So those who rely on faith are blessed along with Abraham, the man of faith..”
Abraham is the father of our faith!  He is the man!  We can follow His example as he followed God by faith with no knowledge of where it would lead.  He gave up family, home, possessions…everything that was familiar and comfortable, but God honored him and made him the father of many nations.Now we are blessed to be a blessing through Father Abraham!
Lets live a life of Courage! Trust in this God who loves us and has made provision for us! Though we may not understand all that He is doing or saying, yet WE TRUST HIM! 

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