Wednesday, January 26, 2011
2011 the year to Take Risks...God's way.
I received this letter in the mail from Joyce Meyer Ministries and thought I would share:
Dear Treasured Friend,
Most people don't like to take risks.
And it's easy to understand why.
There's seemingly too much at stake...too many things that could go wrong.
And as life moves along, the temptation to play it safe and settle for less grows stronger and stronger.
But risk is normally necessary for change.
When I say risk, I don't mean being irresponsbile, an adrenaline junkie or a thrill-seeker. What I am saying is that God has great things in store for you, and for you to experience these things, you can't always play it safe and never get out of your comfort zone.
Sometimes, a leap of faith is absolutely necessary. Sometimes, you have to be willing to take a RISK!
You see, if approached the right way, risk can be a very powerful tool. In your Christian life, I can guarantee you that at some point, God will call you to step out and take a risk.
Today, I want to help prepare you to make 2011 the year when you take the greatest godlky risks of your life.
And not just for risk's sake --it's so you can experience more of the great things God's prepared for you. Simply put, somtimes you have to walk through a door before you know what's on the other side!
So, are you ready to be a risk taker?
If so, you need to be ready to deal with risk's greatest obstacle...
The number one tool the devil uses to keep you where you are is fear. He wants you to be afraid... afraid of making a mistake, afraid of looking silly, afraid of being judged, afraid of failing, afraid of being laughed at, afraid of not doing what God has called you to do.
Living in fear only accomplishes on thing -- it totally stops your progress!
There's a great example of individuals who conquered their fear and took a risk in 2 Kings 7. Four men with leprosy sat outside the gates of the city of Samaria, which was in the middle of a famine and was surrounded on all sides by the Aramean army.
These lepers could have sat there afraid, complaining about their situation. But instead, 2 Kinds 7:3,4 (NASB) says, ... [The men] said to one another, "Why do we sit here until we die? If we...enter the city... we will die there; and if we sit here, we die also. Now therefore come, and let us go over to the camp of the Arameans. If they spare us, we will live; and if they kill us, we will but die."
Realizing their situation could not change unless they took a risk, these lepers walked straight into the enemy's camp, only to find that no one was there because God had confused the enemy and caused them to flee! These men found themselves standing in the deserted camp of the enemy with plenty of food and provision all around them.
These lepers set aside their fear, took a risk... and God took care of them. They set an example for you and me to follow.
When was the last time your obedience to God felt like a risk? When was the last time you took a leap of faith? Why just sit here?
I"m not necessarily asking you to dream up some incredible, unique, new ministry or world-changing idea.
Let's start simple. The lepers didn't have to do anything unbelievable. They just had to put one foot in front of the other and start walking, but they had to choose to get our of their comfort zone.
Each day you can take steps by asking God what you can do for Him. This isn't complicated and you don't have to start a ministry to do it! Simply begin each day by intentionally asking the Lord: "God, what do You want to do through me today?" And here's the key... expect Him to answer you!
Once God has spoken to you, don't expect that goal to happen all by itself, and don't put it off because of fear. That's our natural tendency. We want to wait until the moment's just right or until we feel completely comfortable.
There may be something risky God's already asked you to do that you've been putting off. It may be clear to you even as you're reading this letter. If so, don't wait any longer. You don't have to live in fear. This new way of life can begin right now, and it will grow little by little.
When you feel fear, you can do it afraid because when God asks you to do something, He will give you the opportunity and ability to do it -- and He will more than take care off you when you do.
Ask Him to help you. He will show you what you can do every single day. I'm not talking about preaching sermons -- I'm talking about loving people, listening to them, keeping a godly attitude, being a joy to be around. All of these can be risky because they expose us to the possibility of rejection, resistance or loss.
As you're thinking about embracing risks to obey God, you might feel fear trying to stop you. I understand -- I know what it feels like. But don't let it stop you. Do it anyway! Fear doesn't have to go away in order for you to overcome it. When the devil tells you it's okay to just stay in your comfort zone, tell him no way.
If Christians play it safe, nothing's ever going to change!
Don't play it safe. Don't be afraid of change. Don't settle for living in your comfort zones. Be adventurous and do some things you've never done before. Make a decision to boldly go for the things God's called you to do!
Believe me when I say that God honors people who take risks for Him. I know this is true because I live it every day. Ministry itself is a risk. But every time we've stepped out in faith, God has faithfully provided whatever we needed to do what He's called us to do. We started small, and now, because of people like you who give with a generous heart, we're able to reach people around the world.
Giving can be risky -- but when we are determined to give all that God puts on our heart to give, we can change the world, one person, one family, one nation at a time....
...We're Risk takers in Christ,
Signed Dave and Joyce
P.S. Not only do I beleive 2011 is going to be our ministry's greatest year ever, I believe God wants it to be the greatest year of your life. But neither of us will experience this unless we're willing to trust God and take risks....
I know that was really long (excuse any typos from me retyping it), but I hope it spoke to you the way it spoke to me!! I just wanted to say Amen after the last part about it being the greatest year ever! I am expecting great things this year!!