Walk His Way
“He gives strength to the weary, and to him who lacks might He increases power.” Isaiah 40:29
Walk it Out
Several years ago, my husband and I traveled to Venezuela to teach men and women about discipleship, quiet time, the priority of prayer, and other Bible lessons. The main goal of this trip was to equip these beautiful men and women so they could, in turn, equip others. This was our first mission trip of this kind. Up to this point, my husband and I were being discipled but had no frame of reference in discipling others ourselves. So, here we were during one of our first evenings asked to come up in front of a large congregation and give personal testimony. Let me back up for a moment, I was never asked that in my life, and I was unprepared. “Deer in headlights” is all I can describe for you. Pure panic and it must have showed, followed by a run-on of words that I have no idea to date what was said. Nonetheless, the week unfolded and my husband and I were thrust into situations to pray on the spot for folks. To teach the lessons we “prepared” to give away. Were we really, I would think over and over. To interact with school children and share the gospel. To step into prisons, juvenile detention centers, orphanages, radio stations, and personal residences to answer questions and show and share the love of Jesus. To teach. Most days, I was exhausted from prayer alone just begging God to help us make it through each day and to stand somehow on His strength and do what we were called to do. Looking back, I don’t think I even knew the full measure of what that was.
On the plane coming home, unable to sleep, I was praying and searching for answers. I had so many questions whirling around.
Why would God allow this to happen?
Why, with the knowledge that was poured into me, was I not warned or “groomed” for situations like these?
And with those questions, and more, the enemy began his work.
You are the weakest link.
You made a fool of yourself and your team.
You dishonored God by your rambling and your fear that shook your body for all to see.
You left people the same way you met them, and you didn’t care about them anyway. You only cared about how you appeared.
Some of this is true, friends, especially that very last sentence. Yet, there is no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus pushed right through to comfort in my weakness on that plane ride home. I had been praying and searching for answers, and God gave it to me clearly in this passage, Romans 8:1. Peace, as I read that verse and now I must go home and live within this glorious truth. I was determined, however, never to step in any of those situations again, here or abroad, and I told God this. HA – my pattern is perilous.
And God wouldn’t want you to because of your weakness. Another lie from the enemy.
I don’t know that you can actually prepare someone for these encounters, or if we should. What I do know is, God will provide. When I got home, I scoured the pages of scripture to learn everything I could about the word testimony. That was one area I needed to be prepared in case someone asked me that same question. I wanted to be able to give an answer for the hope that was holding me close. Weeks later, the woman who had been discipling me (also on this trip) sent another lesson to pour over and prepare to teach. I guess she didn’t get the memo that I would no longer be doing this – anywhere (teach that is). When I opened it up, it was a lesson on Romans 8:1. That’s like a direct memo from God instructing me – Pour over what you were granted on that plane so that you are well prepared to give it away, along with “our” testimony.
Dear Heavenly Father, thank you for placing us exactly where you need us. Thank you for all encounters that drive us to you. Thank you for answering our prayers in the midst of exhaustion, confusion, and our very own weakness. Thank you, Father, for showing us just how strong you are. Thank you for meeting our determination with your power and showing us YOUR way. Please grant us the confidence and fearlessness to continue to walk where you lead us. Please make us women and men who love your people. Amen
Will you walk with me?
For those curious, I did pour over and prepare that lesson. As God works His truth in and through His children, He orchestrates our encounters, and we move in faith. We love and share these truths with others. And as we do, we trust that God will open their hearts so that He will be magnified.
As we walk through each scene of our lives, we will encounter situations that lead us to look like the weakest link. But, when we fall down in prayer and rise up on the strength and power of God, the world will not see a weak link but mountains move. We must get out of our way. Better spoken, get out of God’s way.
Look, we are called to be prepared, yes.
We are called to be ready in season and out of season to give a defense for the hope that holds us, yes.
We are called to genuinely care for and love others, yes.
We are called to pass the baton of truth no matter where God leads us, yes.
The condition of Venezuela today is devastating. They are currently in deep economic, political, and humanitarian crises. There is a drastic shortage in food, medicine, electricity, and other basic necessities. Do a bit of research, and you will gather details painting a landscape where you would have no desire to walk. Yet the men and women that are trained and equipped with God’s word are surviving. And they are not only surviving, they are going where God continues to lead them to equip other men and women in Discipleship.
These men and women are not holding onto the appearance of a brother or sister-in-Christ that met their need in weakness. No, they have taken the seed that was flung and allowed Almighty God to nurture, root, and grow its goodness into a fierceness that any crises that comes their way cannot hold them down!
These men and women rise and serve our Lord because of the power, love, and discipline that they grabbed hold of, however it came wrapped!
These men and women are sharing the light and love of Jesus in the midst of mayhem!
These men and women are stepping out in faith and moving to mobilize other faithful men and women to do the same, and there is no circumstance that will cripple these conquerors!
They are doing this and so much more all to God’s glory. Please join me in praying for our friends in Venezuela, and rest assured, “He gives strength to the weary, and to him who lacks might He increases power. Though youths grow weary and tired, and vigorous young men stumble badly, yet those who wait for the LORD will gain new strength; they will mount up with wings like eagles, they will run and not get tired, they will walk and not become weary.” (Isaiah 40:29-31)
When I look at my friends today, I see my Savior, and He is on the move!
Please keep the people of Venezuela in your prayers.