How Will You Respond?

Some folks will study the story of Esther, or listen to a series of sermons on bravery, and catch hold of this truth: living courageously doesn’t depend on us; it depends on Him. Perhaps for the first time in a long time, or for the very first time, you can identify with these words from the Apostle Paul: 
“I have been crucified with Christ. It is no longer I who live, but Christ who lives in me. And the life I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me.” (Galatians 2:20 ESV) 

You realize it’s not about what you can do, but about what He can do through you. You’ve made your decision; you’ve suited up in His armor; you are waiting for His command. All of us would want to respond this way. 

But for some of us, the challenge to be brave is overwhelmed by doubt. Perhaps the moment comes readily to mind, or maybe it’s something the Holy Spirit has just brought to mind -- that moment in the distant past, or perhaps just yesterday or last week, when we didn't pass the test of bravery. We hear the challenge, but the call to try again is drowned out by the past. If your find yourself in this category, consider these words from the Apostle Paul:

“...But one thing I do: forgetting what lies behind and straining forward to what lies ahead, I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus.”
(Philippians 3:13-14 ESV)

Surrender the past to Him; lean into His grace; lean on His power; and begin again. I’ll borrow some lyrics from one of my favorite songs that speak clearly to this moment.

Oh, what I would do to have the kind of faith it takes
To climb out of this boat I'm in, onto the crashing waves
To step out of my comfort zone ...
But the waves are calling out my name, and they laugh at me
Reminding me of all the times I've tried before and failed...
 But the voice of truth tells me a different story
The voice of truth says, "Do not be afraid!"
The voice of truth says, "This is for My glory"

The voice of truth, the One who created you, the One who knows you better than you know yourself, is calling out your name. How will you respond?

By Jesse Smith

Jesse and his wife, Melanie, reside in Lexington, along with their son, Zak.






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