My friend Sharon says this all the time. "Oh mylanta!" Now when it's something really, REALLY big, bad, or amazing it comes out as three distinct words: OH. MY. LANTA!
I actually wrote this at the bottom of page 7 of Steven Furtick's book, Sun Stand Still, and do you know what made me write that? This sentence:
"If the size of your vision for your life isn't intimidating to you, there's a good chance it's insulting to God." (pg.7)
See what I mean? OH. MY. LANTA!
Chapter one starts off with a bang. In fact, Steven says in one place that he is not writing to "calm or coddle you" but to "incite a riot in your mind". (pg.7) He's off to a great start!
Here's another one: "...faith is not a drug to sedate you through a life you hate. It is a force to transport you to another realm of reality." (pg. 10) So much for Christianity being a "crutch". What is your faith for you? A crutch or a force?
This is just the first chapter!
Here's my favorite one, probably because I've been thinking about, praying about, and working on First Things Ministries: "People try to explain to her that it's never been done before. And I think she likes it that way. If it's necessary, and it's never been done, she seems to assume that's because God intends for her to do it." (pg. 6) WOW!!
Steven starts right away dispelling any notion that this is going to be a "feel good" read. This is not about feeling good. In fact, it may be about never feeling comfortable again.
Should I pray for God to keep me intimidated forever? If I stay intimidated by the mission he gives me, does that keep me going back to his Word regularly and back to him in prayer all through the day just to stay grounded?
I already remind myself so many times during the day that it's just not about me. No matter what I feel, think, experience, or mess up, God is God, always the same, never changing. The same yesterday, today, and forever. (Read Hebrews 13:8).
No matter what I do or don't do, I cannot derail God's ultimate plan. I can, however, rob myself of the joy and blessing of being a part of it. I really don't want to do that. I also really hate to feel nervous and intimidated, but I think I might be willing to deal with that if it meant that God was performing miracles of Old Testament proportions in and through me!
That's what this book is about. It is about a faith that is bold and active and solidly grounded in who Jesus is and what he came to do on this earth, and what he intends for us to do while we wait for his return.
As I read this book I think that this is the kind of faith that he expects every Christian to have because it's the kind that changes the world. It is the light set on a hill for all to see. I want that in my life. I want that to BE my life.
God has something audacious for you to do. Do you know what it is? Ask him and he'll show you? Share it with us and let us pray with you and work with you.
It's your turn: What do you think about audacious faith? Too scary? Only for preachers and missionaries? Not interested?
I hope by the time we have reviewed the entire book we all will have a new understanding of audacious faith and an excitement about a life of service.
While we review the book, make it a point to read the book of Joshua in the Old Testament. Pray for God to speak to you through both and to give you a new vision for your life.
The book is, SUN STAND STILL: What Happens When You Dare to Ask God for the Impossible, by Steven Furtick (Multnomah Press, 2010)
Tomorrow - Chapter Two: Prayer That Stops the Sun
Check out his website: www.sunstandstill.org
See you tomorrow.