23 September 2012

The Courage to be a Christian

The barbarian’s life had changed drastically since he had forgiven his once sworn enemy.  He used to lay his head down at night, the only thoughts crossing his mind were of war, pain, death, blood, and revenge. But this night was different, very different.  As he closed his eyes, he felt a peace surrounding him that he had never experienced before in his rough barbaric existence.

He no longer ‘needed’ to awaken to the smell of burning wood and flesh.  No longer did he sleep with one eye open, sword in hand.   No longer did he fear what the dawn would bring.  Yes, he had fought many battles, killed many men, pillaged many villages.  He had failed in his last battle miserably.  The pain and tears of that day would not soon be forgotten. But the day he embraced his enemy and forgave him…that day was the day he became a true warrior.

A true warrior is courageous:  He fights when it is deemed necessary.  He accepts failure as a teacher from which he can learn.  He forgives the evils wrought against him. Now the barbarian could rest!  Every day did not have to be about bloodlust. He was a real man, and real men are not afraid to be who they are.

Whether the barbarian is at his new home living and loving among his new family…
Whether the barbarian is toiling alongside other villagers to raise a new home…
Whether the barbarian is making his presence known as guardian of the village…
Whether the barbarian is in the pub laughing with his friends…
Whether the barbarian is deep in the forest, alone…

He is still and always will be a barbarian.

Our journey comes to an end with the barbarian. It all began with us hearing the truth that we must give our all in our daily walk with Jesus; having the courage to serve, to fail, and to forgive.

Do you have the courage to be a Christian at HOME?

How much of Jesus does your family see in your attitudes and actions? Being a Christian is most difficult at home….and I must admit: it can be tough. Home is where we spend the biggest chunk of our down time, let our guard down. Who you are at home is who you really are.

Do you have the courage to be a Christian in your COMMUNITY?

What kind of impact are you having in Jenks? Tulsa? Glenpool? Sapulpa? Kellyville? What are you doing to be a positive force for Jesus here in your own neighborhood or town? I hope and pray that you will ask yourself this question over and over again until you tire of hearing your own voice ask, and it prompts you to ACTION!

Do you have the courage to be a Christian when you PLAY?

I believe a Christian should have more fun than anyone else on the planet.  We should laugh harder, love longer, and scream louder than anyone else. God designed us to enjoy life.

Are there any rules to what a Christian can or cannot do when it comes to entertainment? I mean are all movies evil? There was a time, early in my ministry, where I would have readily given you a long list of what was ok for you to do and what was wrong for you to do but I have learned there is an easier and more biblical way to handle the issue.

The next time you are trying to decide whether or not to participate in some form of “play” ask yourself, “If Jesus were physically with me right now, would I be comfortable having Him with me during this activity?”

By doing this, you bring your relationship with Jesus into focus and you let your love relationship with him decide the rules. Considering a movie? Jesus has already seen it! Would you feel comfortable watching it with Him and then discussing it with Him later? If the answer is yes, go! If the answer is no, then find something else for you and Jesus to do.

If you think that being a Christian is boring, you do not know my Jesus! Enjoy your life!

Do you have the courage to be a Christian when you’re ALONE?

Who are you when you are alone? Is the only time you live for Jesus when you are in the presence of watchful eyes? It has been said that if you want to know a person’s true character find out what they do behind closed doors when they’re alone. I want you all to be courageous believers, strong, fearless, and unstoppable! Listen well to the voice of God for this is how He wants us all to finish life:

“I have fought a good fight! I have finished the race, and I have remained faithful!!!” 2 Tim 4:7

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