Read Acts 27:25. What was the source of Paul’s courage? What does this tell us about where we should find our courage?
Where do you most need to see God going ahead of you? Where do you need to walk with God in courage?
Last year, when news of the Oslo bombing broke, a friend phoned Kasper Ilaug and told him that people needed help at Utoya Island, 15 minutes away. Grabbing gear and jumping into his boat, Kasper sped to Utoya and found mayhem. A shooter had begun to fire upon teenage campers and their leaders. Kasper pulled to the shore and loaded on as many people as he could. He attempted to wave more over, but they were unresponsive. They were dead.
With the shooter still not apprehended, Kasper recognized that they were now even more vulnerable in the boat. So he kept the group quiet and slowly motored away from shore. He then made two more trips! Later Kasper said, “There’s a lot of other people . . . who have done the same thing.”
As Moses gave Israel their instructions for the journey ahead he told each of them to have courage. Courage would be required as they faced their enemies and as they settled their land. “Do not be afraid and do not panic,” he said (Deuteronomy 31:6). These instructions were not only to the warriors or to the ruling class. Moses told all of the people to live courageously.
He called all the people to fearless living—not a courage that was based on the steely character of their resolve, but in the fact that God was their God. “Do not be afraid,” Moses said, “for the Lord your God will personally go ahead of you. He will neither fail you nor abandon you” (Deuteronomy 31:6).
So long as we view courage as the extraordinary feat of those who are particularly strong or especially disciplined, we won’t obey God’s invitation to live free of fear. Courage comes not because we are so strong but because God is so strong. With a strong God, courage is always available. Courage is for each of us.
NLT 365-day reading plan passage for today: Mark 1:16-39
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