Ministries are defined less by those who are for you than by how you handle the challenges that come against you. You could have the best support, the most enthusiastic social media following in the world, the most engaged congregation, and the story of your life would still express the obstacles and adversity you overcame.
Like it or not, it's the truth. We know Moses because he faced Pharaoh and gained freedom for God's people. We know who David was because he overcame Goliath. We know Jesus as the Savior who conquered sin and death on the cross and took the keys to hell from the enemy. Each of these extraordinary biblical people accomplished many things, but these victories are the defining moments that changed everything around them.
I don't think anyone would dare suggest these victories were easily won. Each leader faced more than a little trepidation as they stepped up to the front lines of battle against their foe. I've learned firsthand that the presence of fear doesn't imply a lack of courage or lack of faith.
This will make me vulnerable, but I know what it is to face discouragement and anxiety, so I am writing it here, now, in front of God and all of you: I face fear almost every day. I may face it, but my life is not defined by fear; it is defined by faith, which always leads to victory.
Moses overcame Pharaoh because he walked closely with God and established a habit of faithful obedience. David's courage was not rooted in the fact that he was an excellent marksman with a slingshot; it was his faith in his God, who is bigger than any giant. Jesus Christ, who encountered every obstacle and temptation you and I do today but remained blameless (Heb. 4:15), lived a life of faithful devotion to His Father's plan and utter submission to the power of the Holy Spirit.
Whether or not these individuals trembled in the moment of truth means little to nothing. The point is, their faith—not their fear—overwhelmed them when they needed it most.
I encourage you to take a moment and consider your challenges. Sit down and be honest with yourself about what it is that makes you afraid. Once you've identified it, don't run from it, but ask the Holy Spirit to release faith in you that will cause you to rise with courage. After all, the first step into the flow of the Holy Spirit is, ask and you shall receive. (See Matt. 7:7.)
Once you've asked God for courageous faith, seek Him in prayer. When you seek after Him, the power of the Holy Spirit will reveal to you what it is that makes you want to run away from that fear instead of standing tall from confidence in your God.
This kind of revelation through everyday prayer will unlock the door in front of you but also open the door that is shut within you. Here's what I mean. Your problem, and my problem, is not just about the door that is shut in front of us, blocking our path. It is about the door that is shut within us due to fear and our reluctance to knock on it. When we ask, seek and knock (Matt. 7:8), God's river of living water within us will burst through that closed door, and the words of the apostle Paul will begin to stir up inside of us: "I can do all things because of Christ who strengthens me" (Phil. 4:13).
This level of vulnerability, surrender and persistence leads to supernatural, Holy Spirit–inspired faith. Ask for this faith, seek His revelation and knock on the hidden fears within you so God can open up a new door into His blessings and promises. The victory it will bring will change the trajectory of your life's story.
You're beautiful. I see Jesus in you.
Have a great week!
Mikel French has challenged spiritual awakening all across America, where many celebrations extended into multiple weeks, and has conducted celebrations in France, Sweden, Russia, Romania, Poland, Ukraine, Moldova, Serbia, Germany, South Africa, Malawi, the Philippines, Hong Kong, Taiwan, Haiti, Japan, Singapore, India and Thailand. He conducted an outreach celebration in Manila, Philippines, reaching 200,000 teenagers with the Book of Hope. Through the generous support of partners, he has presented the message of Jesus Christ to millions of people in the nation of Russia through televised citywide soul-winning celebrations. Mikel considers it an honor to assist in conducting the annual pastor's conference, where thousands of pastors from Russia's 11 time zones come for training, teaching and equipping. Mikel and his wife, Marsha, reside in Tulsa, Oklahoma.
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