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Low On Courage? Try These Six Ways Back To Confidence

football-1005498_640I like those old football movies where the coach fires up his down-trodden players at halftime. The other team is up 73-0 but the coach, who resembles Ronald Reagan, restores their courage with a passionate speech.

“Win one for the Gipper!” (And everyone under 40 says, “Who is the Gipper?”)

Supercharged with energy from the speech the team explodes from the locker room and goes on to win the game 74-73.  (When you are Hollywood you can make it come out  however you want).

But, how do real-life people who love the Lord, get a refill of courage when they find themselves in a corner, trembling like a bucket of jelly?

Here are six more courage-givers.

1.         You tell yourself God’s truth over and over. Sometimes it seems all your enemies have united against you. Sickness, financial problems, relationship problems and depression cause you to want to run and hide.

But there is no place to hide. What to do?

Don’t be paralyzed by fear, Pray! Remind yourself of God’s promises, then act! You latch on to God’s word and hold on like the swordsman who grasps his sword and swings it until his hand is stuck to it.

2.         Praise God in the face of your enemies. It looked like old king Jehoshaphat was getting ready to bite the dust. His enemies united to attack him. These powerful armies threatened to destroy him. Continue reading

Hide Your Veins When There’s a Nurse Around—Courage #2

The other day my wife and I were at a restaurant with my daughter Christi, who is a nurse. I noticed she was looking at the veins in my arms.

“You’ve got good veins daddy.”

Kind of makes me nervous when a nurse looks at my veins like that. But, it also encourages me to think that if doctors and nurses have to get life-giving medicine into my body, they won’t have to dig around a long time.

So get your veins popping out and I’ll inject the medicine you need to get into your spirit so that you can get healed from paralyzing fear. Why is it important? Think about this story.

One of my friends told me about an experience his father had when the father was a little boy. The youngster climbed a tree and was afraid to come down. He yelled for his mother.

She came out on the porch of the house, saw him, and with a disgusted looked turned and went back into the house.

The family lived in the country and undoubtedly the little one had been impressed by hunters shooting game out of trees. For some reason he thought his mother was going into the house to get the hunting gun in order to shoot him out of the tree. (She wasn’t).

The little fellow was so scared he turned loose of the tree and endured a tooth-jarring collision when he hit the ground.

Sometimes fear makes you do irrational things. That’s one of the reasons why you need to be en-couraged.

So David, let’s continue the conversation we started last week. Tell me. How do you get courage when your courage tank is empty? Continue reading

God’s Powerful Source of Courage When You’re Afraid

 

 

 

 

 

 

Sometimes we’re all lacking courage

When I’m facing something I dread, I don’t like to go to bed. Why is it that a courageous lion goes to sleep and a shivering puppy wakes up at 2:30 am? 

I’m not at my best in the middle of the night. Reason leaves and fear or anger or whatever my reaction du jour is, against whatever I’m facing, takes over.

My problem swells from a small stream to an uncrossable river.

Once I had to do something I dreaded. I don’t know why it bothered me so much because I had done similar things many times. This one scared me, though.

I began to wake up in the middle of the night with anguish attacks. I fought it. I prayed and cried out to God for help.

One night I woke up with a snatch of a song I didn’t know, running over and over in my spirit. I honestly believe the Holy Spirit was singing it inside me.

“You are faithful, God you are faithful.” Night after night when I woke up to the taunting of fear, this phrase from my song  repeated itself over and over. “You are faithful, God you are faithful.”

God took care of the situation and I lived (evidently). But what stuck with me was the fact that God gave me a song to replace my dread. 

I suspect I’m not the only one who ever dealt with night fears. Listen to the this testimony written over 2500 years ago.

“The Lord will command His lovingkindness in the daytime, And in the night His song shall be with me— A prayer to the God of my life.”  (Psalm 42:8)

Courage. So often I lose it. God is the fear fighter in my life, though. He gives me the promises of His Word. He strengthens my heart when I buck up to face my fear. He sings for me: “You are my hiding place; You shall preserve me from trouble; You shall surround me with songs of deliverance. Selah (Ps. 32:7, NKJV)  Continue reading

“God, Why Don’t You Reveal Yourself!”

Let’s pretend that you and I are out for a walk and we come across a blind fellow.

« Hey, how are you doing? » we say.

« Whoah. What is this? » he says out loud. I’m not sure you’re really there. I can’t see you. First of all, if you’re there, prove it. I kind of think you must be but I’m not sure.”

So, I turn to you and say, « Let’s prove to him that we exist. Give him a hundred dollars. » You frown as if to say, « Why don’t you give him a hundred dollars,” but since you’re rich you pull out your wallet and give it to him.

“Okay, this is good so how can I be sure you’re really there? I mean, this is money. I can tell by the feel and smell. But it may have been the results of billions of years of changes. It probably started out as a penny. Yeah, that’s certainly it. So if you’re there prove it.”

It’s funny, if you’re speaking with me, I don’t ask you to prove that you exist.
Yet, God is constantly called to task because He won’t “prove” that He exists.

We want Him to show up to sign autographs after the ball game. We want Him to flash a PowerPoint presentation on the side of Mount Kilamanjaro–something spectacular. Or what about if He just walks up to us and says, “Hey, I’m God. Want me to do a fantastic miracle to prove it?”

Why Doesn’t God Show Himself?
God has already shown Himself. He just won’t show Himself like we’re wanting Him to. There are reasons for that.

The first reason God doesn’t reveal Himself like we ask is that it would kill us. We’d all be crispy critters if this frail body had a full revelation of God. A small peep of God to Israel at Mount Sinai scared them to death. Moses glimpsed Him from behind and that was all he could take. God is bigger than the universe and as small as the smallest organelles or quarks. A full revelation of God would obliterate us.

If God limited the revelation of Himself to what we ask, we would limit God to what we know. If God shows up on the mountain, fuming, shaking, and burning, we’d all behave for a few days (think of the aftermath of September 11 when churches were full the next weekend). After a while, we’d go back to doing what we do when He’s not revealing Himself like that.

We want God to reveal Himself but could we comprehend a full revelation in this life? He would have to reduce Himself to much less that what He is. We’d reduce Him to an idol, or a man and worship that, but God surpasses that tiny idea. It’s like comparing the light of a match to the sun.

He doesn’t reveal Himself like that because He is so much more than that. This visible earth isn’t the only reality that exists. God inhabits everything and reigns in all.

He has revealed Himself to those who think. Look at His Creation. I’m sorry, but it seems incredibly unscientific to think that something so intricate resulted from the earth winning a cosmic lottery. And where did the earth come from anyway? And the cosmic lottery that we won, where did that cosmos come from?

Want to know God? We can understand His soul by looking into His creation. We see what He loves. For sure, even the creation has been corrupted by sin but God’s beauty is still there.

Anthony Flew was a notable atheist for most of his life. But, as he considered the “big bang” and realized there was a start to all this he began to believe in the existence of God. According to him, he simply followed the evidence where it led.

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God’s Timing: the Difference Between Winners and Losers

A painful image etched itself into our minds as we saw 21-year old French hurdler Wilhem Belocian weeping after being disqualified from his first Olympic race, the 110 meters hurdles.

His sin?

He started an instant too soon.

Year of effort and sacrifice counted for nothing.

He had worked hard enough. He was one of the fastest in the world in his event. He wanted the gold medal badly. Yet, a fraction of a second sunk all his hopes. (Watch Belocian– https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=H3f96gEoHYw )

Human lightning bolt, Usain Bolt, has only been beaten once in the last eight years. He jumped the gun at the 2011 World Championships and was disqualified.

It’s not enough to work hard, sacrifice and run with everything in you. You got to start at the right time or you can lose all that labor.

Jumping the Gun

It’s like that with God’s will. When God tells you to do something, there are two vital elements involved: God’s will and God’s timing. You can’t have one without the other.

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