Be careful what you ask for!
Have you ever prayed really hard for something? I mean, have you gotten down on your knees and cried out the Lord asking to be used by Him only to end up thinking, “Did I really ask for this?” Be careful what you ask for. Anyone who will accomplish something big in this life, especially those who feel called to ministry, are going to pay a price for it. Spiritual warfare is real and when you step out in your calling the enemy cranks up the heat. Mark my words, it will cost you relationships, your personal comfort, and it will require a life of discipline. In John Eldridge’s book, Waking the Dead, he cautions us that “to live in full ignorance of spiritual warfare is the most naïve and dangerous thing a person can do.” When we dive into God’s plan for our lives we have a proverbial bull’s-eye emblazoned on our backs. We are an automatic target for the enemy because he wants to squelch the work of the Holy Spirit. Eldridge goes on to picture spiritual warfare when we choose to allow ourselves to be used by the Lord to accomplish Kingdom business. He says, “It’s like skipping through the worst part of town, late at night waving your wallet above your head. It’s like walking into an al-Qaida training camp, wearing an ‘I love the United States’ T-shirt. It’s like swimming with great white sharks, dressed as a wounded sea lion and smeared with blood. And let me tell you something: you don’t escape spiritual warfare simply because you choose not to believe it exists or because you refuse to fight it.” So, is it worth the fight? Is the plan God has for your life worth the risk, the discomfort, and the persecution? If God has called you to something big, there will always be risk involved. That is what faith is about. Where you end, faith kicks in. In your calling you will inevitably come to a point where you must decide to face the obstacles or to turn back in fear. When we realize that He who is in us is greater than he who is in the world, we can have the courage to take the risk and pursue the higher calling. Don’t miss the promise because you think the price is too high! Jesus faced great obstacles. I can’t even imagine the horrors of having nails pounded into my hands, but Jesus thought it was worth it. He thought you were worth it. I don’t know how it felt to carry the weight of sin on His shoulders, but I do know that Jesus chose to endure because He knew you and I were the promise. What has God called you to do? Is the journey too daunting, or will you choose to stare in the face of fear and “do it afraid?”