Thursday, April 25, 2013

Standing on the Sidelines

Hey Friend,

With all the evil taking place in this world...I dedicate this post to encouraging men and women of faith to rise up and share their faith with those lost and living in a dark world.

When Nicole was six and a half and Steven was two, Nicole used to have soccer games on Saturday mornings.  I would go and cheer her on from the sidelines.  Steven, however, was not content to merely stand on the sideline, he wanted to be IN the game and would pull away from me and run onto the field after the ball.  One morning, after multiple times of scooping my son off the field, the ref kindly suggested that I go elsewhere.  Embarrassed, Steven and I slunk our way to the safety of the nearby play area.

Lately, I've been asking myself, why don't I have the tenacity that my two year old had? Why, when it comes to sharing my faith am I content to stand on the sidelines?  Perhaps one answer is procrastination (after all it has taken me 52 years to finally write my blog).  It is so easy to say, "I'll do that tomorrow."  Satan is all too glad when we let laziness overcome our conviction.  But, the reality is...our days are numbered.

"Teach us to number our days aright, that we may gain a heart of wisdom."  (Psalm 90:12)

And, not to be morbid, what if tomorrow never comes?  Or how do we know how much time we have?

"But the day of the Lord will come like a thief.  The heavens will disappear with a roar; the elements will be destroyed by fire, and the earth and everything in it will be laid bare."  (2 Peter 3:10)

Another hindrance is self-doubt.  We doubt our ability to share eloquently the good news of the gospel.  But God doesn't care about our ability, He cares about our availability.  Get in the game and the coach (God) will call the plays and give you the words.  Sometimes we are suited up to go into the game, but when the Coach actually says, "You're in", we freeze like a deer in the headlights.  Don't despair though, you are in good company.  Many famous leaders like Moses, Jonah and the Apostles wanted to run the other way when God called them to be a light unto His people. Eventually, though, they obeyed. 

Mix in a good old dose of fear and we'll stand on the sidelines forever.  But God has not given us a spirit of fear...

"For God has not given us a spirit of fear and timidity, but of power, love, and self discipline.  (2 Timothy 1:7)

Being a light unto a dark world will call you outside your comfort zone.  I can guarantee that, but you don't go alone.

"See, I am sending an angel ahead of you to guard you along the way and to bring you to the place I have prepared."  (Exodus 23:20)

We need to be about the Lord's business.  That is our calling.  We need to be a giant directional arrow pointing to God.  Where's your arrow pointing?

"Sing to the Lord, all the earth; proclaim His salvation day after day."  (1 Chronicles 16:23)

The world needs you.  Only you can share your personal testimony.  It is your thumbprint and no two prints are alike.  Someone, somewhere, needs to hear what you have to say in only the way that you can say it.  God has uniquely equipped you to spread the good news through words and deeds.

So I ask you, "Are you content to stand on the sidelines?"  Or are you ready to say, "Coach put me in?"

"No one knows the exact hour of Christ's return not even Christ himself."  (Mark 13:32)

I pray you will go with God's speed into the game, bravely throwing off all hindrances, and making a mark in a way only you can do!