What are you afraid of? Well, if you are like me the first thing you think of is spiders! I do not like those hideous creatures at all! In fact, I firmly believe the only good spider is a completely dead spider; so one of my rules when my kids were growing up was, "kill all spiders and then kill them again!" And just so you know, there is no such thing as a "small" spider!
Well, beyond the obvious things, like spiders, what are you afraid of? More specifically, what are you afraid of when it comes to your ministry? Are you afraid you won't be able to find enough volunteers? Are you afraid the children and families won't be reached? Are you afraid of church politics? You may say you aren't "afraid" of these things, but how much time to you spend thinking - or even worrying - about them? These are all legitimate things to be concerned about, but we do not have to be afraid.
Yesterday I heard a sermon about not being afraid. (You can watch it by following this link - and I highly recommend you take the 33 minutes and 37 seconds it takes to do so) Pastor Tom Olsson took us to Joshua 1:1-9 and gave us God's Promise, Instruction, Strategy and the promise of His Presence to help us - Joshua 1:5-9, "As I was with Moses, so I will be with you; I will never leave you nor forsake you. 6 Be strong and courageous, because you will lead these people to inherit the land I swore to their ancestors to give them. 7 “Be strong and very courageous. Be careful to obey all the law my servant Moses gave you; do not turn from it to the right or to the left, that you may be successful wherever you go. 8 Keep this Book of the Law always on your lips; meditate on it day and night, so that you may be careful to do everything written in it. Then you will be prosperous and successful.9 Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged, for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go.”
You aren't trying to take possession of the land of Israel, but if you are in children's ministry, God has called you to reach the children and families in your church and community. There are times when this call can feel overwhelming, but in those times - and at all times - remember, God has promised to be with us and to NEVER leave us!!! We can be strong and courageous by choosing to obey God and to immerse ourselves in His Word! This is what Pastor Tom shared with us yesterday. It is so true! I've found when I've felt overwhelmed by all the things I needed to do, it is probably because I haven't been spending as much time in God's Word as I need to. When I'm immersed in God's Word, I do not tend to feel overwhelmed or afraid.
So, as you look forward to the Summer and then the start of the Fall ministries, dont' be afraid! Don't be discouraged! Instead, take courage! You can be strong and very courageous because God is with you and He will NOT let go of you! Spend some time reading Joshua 1 today and make this your prayer . . .
Dear God, on this day I ask for Your help in being
strong and very courageous; I want to be strong and very courageous, but sometimes
it is very difficult. Please strengthen and embolden me! I choose to be careful
to obey all Your Word and not turn from it to the right or the left so I may
experience Your blessing wherever I go. I commit to keep Your Word always on my
lips; to think on it day and night so I will be careful and alert and able to
do everything written in Your Word. I choose to be strong! I choose to be
courageous! I choose to not be afraid! I choose to not be discouraged because I
know You, the LORD my God is with me wherever I go! Thank You! Amen!