Tag Archives: Courage

4 Characteristics Worthy of Modeling

He was never king, yet he left a mark in history.

Jonathan was King Saul’s oldest son, yet he was never king. He does not make it into a hall of fame, yet he was a good friend. He was not a star, yet he was respected. In many ways, Jonathan was just an ordinary person.

Jonathan’s life models 4 characteristics everyone should strive to possess.

1. Jonathan was humble.

Jonathan understood David would be a better king. He was willing to look past himself to the big picture. In humility, Jonathan was willing to place himself in second place. It has been said, “There are kings and kingmakers.” Jonathan was a kingmaker.

The kingmakers of the world understand they may not be the best fit for a position. They spend their time looking past themselves to the big picture rather than fussing and feuding trying to promote their own agenda. In humility, they realize their purpose is to make a king, not be a king.

2. Jonathan was a great friend.

Jonathan was a true friend to David.

  • He was loyal to David. When everyone else left David, Jonathan stuck by his side. Job 6:14 says friends should stay loyal even if a person forsakes the Lord.
  • He was willing to share in David’s burdens. Jonathan helped carry the weight of David’s circumstances. A good friend is willing to help carry another’s burden.
  • He encouraged David. Jonathan was willing to go to David and offer encouragement. Jonathan recognized a rough season in David’s life and encouraged him in that time.
  • Jonathan invested in David’s life. Jonathan stepped aside so David could be king. He gave something of his own to David.

3. Jonathan had faith which pushed him to action.

1 Samuel 14 records Jonathan’s daring plan to win a battle with the Philistines. Though outnumbered and overpowered, Jonathan’s faith pushed him to go forward.

Jonathan says in verse 6, “Let’s go across to the outpost of those pagans…. Perhaps the Lord will help us for nothing can hinder the Lord. He can win a battle whether he was many warriors or only a few.” Jonathan was not afraid to step out in faith because he believed nothing was impossible for the Lord.

How would our goals and dreams change if we followed this example?

4. Jonathan showed undaunted courage.

The plan Jonathan devised took much courage to execute. He was outnumbered, and the Philistines had to see him. Climbing to the Philistines position required both hands and feet, so for a short period, Jonathan and his armor-bearer were not able to defend themselves. To spite these dangers, Jonathan had the courage to move forward.

Jonathan’s courage came as a result of his faith. He knew nothing was impossible for the Lord.

Taking steps to fulfill dreams and achieve goals can be scary. Much courage may be required. We can find this courage in the Lord. If he is with us, there is no need to fear.

Jonathan certainly left his mark in history. His courage, faith, friendship, and humility are worthy of modeling.

 

4 Tips for Every Person’s Journey

A great leader listens to God’s tips.

Joshua was 85 years old when he became the leader of Israel. The first 85 years of Joshua’s life prepared him for this moment. He understood how difficult the Egyptian bondage was for the Israelites. He experienced the agonizing stress of wondering through the desert, and now it was time to go into the promised land. Joshua had been watching Moses lead, but now it was his time. It was his time to fulfill his purpose.

In Joshua’s commissioning, we find 4 tips for every Christian.

1. Timing is crucial.

Joshua had been with Israel in Egypt, through the desert, and was standing at the border of the promised land. Moses was the leader until it was time; time for Joshua to take the reigns and lead the people.

In Joshua 1:2, the Lord tells Joshua, “The time has come for you to lead these people, the Israelites, across the Jordan River into land I am giving them.”

Joshua started when it was time. In his Law of Timing, John Maxwell states Joshua assumed leadership at the proper time. Moses was a diplomatic leader, which is the leadership style the people needed in the desert. But on the border of Canaan, the needs of the people changed. They needed a fierce military style leader, which is Joshua. Timing is crucial in successfully fulfilling our purpose.

You and I have goals, dreams, and a purpose, and to be successful, we must be sensitive to the Lord’s timing.

If our goal is writing a book, we don’t want to jump ahead and push it to publication before it is ready. If our dream is to run a marathon, we need to properly train before entering the race. If we believe our purpose is to be a leader, we shouldn’t form an undercurrent to take out those in our way. We should wait on the Lord to open the opportunity. Timing is important.

There’s a proper time for every activity, so we should be ready when it’s time. Meanwhile, you and I should patiently prepare for our time to move.

2. The Lord is with us.

Joshua was reminded the Lord is right beside him.

The Lord says in Joshua 1:5, “No one will be able to stand against you as long as you live for, I will be with you as I was with Moses. I will not fail you or abandon you.”

The Lord goes on in verse 9, “For the Lord your God is with you wherever you go.”

God had Joshua’s back. He was there to help Joshua overcome the barriers standing in his way. Joshua could count on the Lord.

God has our back, and he is with you and me as well. He will go with us and help overcome the barriers that stand in the way. We can count on the Lord.

3. Be strong and courageous.

Joshua 1:6 says, “Be strong and courageous. For you are the one who will lead these people to possess all the land I swore to their ancestors I would give them.”

The Lord promised to be with Joshua, then challenged him to be strong and courageous. Joshua was the one who would fulfill his purpose. No one else was going to lead the people. No one else was going to lead the charge to possess the land. Joshua was the one. He could be strong and courageous in the Lord.

The Lord has promised us he will be right beside us, and he is challenging us to be strong and courageous. No one else is going to fulfill our calling. Our goals, dreams, and purpose are unique to us. The Lord has a plan for our lives, and we can be strong and courageous in him.

“This is my command: be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid or discouraged. For the Lord your God is with you wherever you go,” says the Lord in Joshua 1:9.

4. Remember the word of God.

Joshua 1:7-8 implores, “Be strong and very courageous. Be careful to obey all the instructions Moses gave you. Do not deviate from them turning either to the right or to the left. Then you will be successful in everything you do. Study this book of instruction continually. Meditate on it day and night so you will be sure to obey everything written in it. Only then will you prosper and succeed in all you do.”

The Lord challenged Joshua to remember his decrees. The guidance offered by the Lord’s word is what brings success.

As you and I are fulfilling our purpose, the Bible will guide us. There seems to be guidance for every season, every challenge, every question. We are earnestly begged to remember the Lord’s word on our journey.

Joshua put all these tips into practice, and he was a great leader. He understood timing. He knew the Lord was with him. He did not lack strength or courage, and he applied the Lord’s word. As a result, he was able to lead Israel in taking possession of the promised land. He was able to complete his calling and leave a legacy.

Acting

Challenge yourself to begin exercising these tips.

  • Pray that the Lord makes you more sensitive to his timing.
  • Challenge yourself to replace fear with the fact the Lord is with you.
  • Ask the Lord for strength and courage as you overcome barriers.
  • Seek guidance from the Bible.

How’s it going? Share in the comments.

Please share this post with your friends.

 

Courageous Fishermen

Deep water, tall waves, and a fierce wind made for an interesting night on the boat. The boat swayed from side to side as it was tossed by the waves, but the crew stayed hard at work. It was commonplace to be caught in a storm.

The wind would sweep down from the mountains and cause a severe storm to pop up on an otherwise good night for fishing. Catching fish meant risking being caught in a storm, so fishermen were accustomed to this situation. Much courage was required to hold fishing as your occupation.

Fishermen would go into deep water, survive a treacherous storm, and repeat the process the next night. They courageously viewed storms as a normal part of their lives. They did not lack courage, which is one of the reasons Jesus called fishermen to be his first disciples.

Jesus knew it would take courage to travel the road ahead, so he called courageous people. The same is still true today.

Traveling life’s road requires much courage. With all the twists and turns, no one is sure what tomorrow may bring, and a storm may pop up at any time. But, as Christians, we can take courage in the Lord.

Psalm 46 says, “God is our refuge and strength; always ready to help in times of trouble. So, we will not fear when earthquakes come and the mountains crumble into the sea. Let the oceans roar and foam. Let the mountains tremble as the waters surge.

A river brings joy to the city of our God, the sacred home of the Most High. God dwells in that city; it cannot be destroyed. From the very break of day, God will protect it. The nations are in chaos, and the kingdoms crumble. God’s voice thunders, and the earth melts. The Lord of Heaven’s armies is here among us. The God of Israel is our fortress.

Come see the glorious works of the Lord: see how he brings destruction upon the world, he causes wars to end throughout the earth, he breaks the bow and snaps the spear, he burns the shields with fire…. The Lord of Heaven’s armies is here among us. The God of Israel is our fortress.”

We can courageously take the next bend in the road because the Lord is with us. The Psalmist reminds us that our refuge, fortress, and strength travels with us.

Around the bend may be natural disaster, family emergency, economic strain, lost job, or health concerns, but we can take the corner courageously. The Lord is with us, and saying, “Take courage. It is I.”

Some form of the words “do not fear” appears in the Bible 365 times; that is, one time for every day of the year. Each day the Lord encourages us, “Do not be afraid. Take courage.”