A courageous person is someone who steps up to the challenge, someone who is willing to fight rather that retreat. Someone willing to step up, and intervene, because they want to be a catalyst for change. At Freshwater, our vision statement is a rally cry for our church family to “courageously share the life-changing love of Jesus Christ in a real, relevant, and relational manner.” I believe that this generation, our generation, is called to courageously live out our faith in such a way that it makes a difference in the community and among our peers. I want to challenge you courageously live out your faith in five ways.
1. Courageously love others in Jesus name.
Believers are called to love others because Jesus loves us. We love others by listening, showing compassion, empathy, and helping even if we are not asked to. Think about what makes you feel loved by your friends and bless others in a similar way. Christianity is caught more than taught so when you love others you are reflecting Christ to them. Courageous people love others in Jesus name.
2. Courageously invite others to join you at Freshwater.
Every membership class I ask people how they heard about Freshwater. Some people say they saw a road sign or found us on the web. But the vast majority said they came to Freshwater because they were invited! I challenge you to invite two people to church in the next two weeks. I am sure one or both of them will join you simply because you asked. It’s going to take courage, but God will lead you to the right person, you just have to be willing to extend the invitation.
3. Courageously give to finance the vision.
Tithing is a biblical principle and it takes courage to do because it’s a matter of trust. Tithing is a way we say “thank you” to God. He gives us the whole pie and only asks us to share a single slice with him out of gratitude. If you currently give nothing, give something. If you give something, start tithing. It’s not about equal giving, it’s about equal sacrifice. Tithing is a tangible demonstration of our faith that everyone is called to do. The best part is to see how much God blesses us in return for our faithfulness. I challenge you to tithe for three months and test God to see if you are not better off than you were before you started tithing. Doubt me? Read Malachi 3:10.
4. Courageously serve to make a difference.
If you are a believer, you are the hands and feet of Christ and there is work to do. Jesus calls every member to minister is some way, shape, or form. If you are currently serving in a significant way, that’s awesome. If not, why not step up and serve? When we serve we are helping others to grow in their faith whether we greet them at the door and make them feel comfortable or lead a small group that challenges them to learn more about who God is.
5. Courageously live out your faith.
When we courageously live out our faith we are willing to follow the cross and not the crowd. We help when others are hurting, we step in when others step out, we care when others could care-less. We discipline with godly love and love like Christ. Following Christ is not easy, in fact it’s much harder than just following the crowd. That is why it takes courage to live out your faith.
Will you be courageous with your faith today? Will you make the decision right now to follow Christ and not the crowd? The Holy Spirit will give you the strength you need to follow Christ in all things and provide you with the joy that comes with it. Be courageous.