Anchored in Hope
It was another day on the road. We’re headed across the country to a training facility where we will live for the next couple of months to be prepared for our new life overseas. The weather was beautiful and Husband had some great ideas up his sleeve! Fishing and a picnic were on the agenda! We hopped out the the car, grabbed the fishing poles and headed for the water!
Jesus Calls His First Disciples
As Jesus was walking beside the Sea of Galilee, he saw two brothers, Simon called Peter and his brother Andrew. They were casting a net into the lake, for they were fishermen. “Come, follow me,” Jesus said, “and I will send you out to fish for people.” …
…Immediately they left their nets and followed him. ~Matthew 4:18-19
Scripture says that these men – average people just like you and just like me – heard the Lord say “follow me” and they responded immediately. As I watched my children cast their lines in the blue water that was painted glittery gold by the sun, the scriptures in Matthew challenged me. I want to hear the Lord call me forth and I want to respond immediately with absolute trust and confidence, whether it be to share a testimony of His faithfulness to a lady in the checkout line at Walmart in America, or with a lady at the Market on the other side of the world. My job is to cast the line – share the gospel with the people He places in my path – but the outcome is up to God. As my son cast his line in the water once more, he had no way of knowing if and when a fish would swim by and bite his bait, but oh how he waited with great expectation. He was alert and he was in position. The second he felt a nibble, he was ready to reel the fish in!
We are going to a part of the world that we are told is 99.7% Muslim. Our city is made up of millions…yes millions…of people just like us. People that wake up everyday, go to school, go to work, have dinner as a family, go to movies with friends, and if they died today would spend eternity in Hell. Did you get that? They have never been told the Truth. They don’t know that a Savior was beaten to a pulp and hung on a tree so that they could have life abundant. They don’t know freedom and they don’t know what it feels like to live in assurance of where they will spend eternity. They don’t know what it feels like to experience absolute peace within their soul. They don’t know what deep and satisfying joy feels like – a joy that cannot be taken from them and a joy that has nothing to do with their earthly circumstances. They are worried about shaming their family, but they don’t know that a humble King carried their shame for them – that it’s finished and they are free.
“Those who look to him are radiant; their faces are never covered with shame.” ~Psalm 34:5
They don’t know what hope is, and that breaks my heart. Sigh. Truly breaks my heart because there was a time before I knew Jesus, and not just knew about Him, but knew Him. Those days were dark and hopeless and unsteady and desperate. Then came Jesus and joy and peace and LIFE and hope. Oh then came HOPE, and hope changes everything.
I hear often “You’re so brave” or “You have so much courage. I could just never do what you are doing.” There is nothing about ME that is brave. I am naturally shy and pretty naive. I am no different than you. Hope in Jesus makes me steadfast and Hope in Him makes me secure. Hope in Jesus makes my naturally fearful heart brave. The Word tells us that He will never leave us or forsake us. We are also told the end of the story! There may be times that satan seems to win, but the final battle is already finished! Someday Jesus will come back in the victory that is already His, and because my HOPE is in Him and spending forever in Heaven, I am fearless. He has freed me from the curse and so I give him my life. Everything I am belongs to Him and hopes and waits with great expectation in His promises! I desire the goodness of God and I expect to obtain it! Yes, the people we will be sharing with are Muslim and yes there are martyrs in the country we will be living in, but when my HOPE in in Jesus and I know that from my first cry until my final breath is in His hands, I can boldly follow Him with supernatural courage and strength.
“We have this hope as an anchor for the soul, firm and secure.” ~Hebrews 6:19, NIV
“[Now] we have this [hope] as a sure and steadfast anchor of the soul [it cannot slip and it cannot break down under whoever steps out upon it—a hope]…”
~Hebrews 6:19, AMP
“If only you would prepare your heart
and lift up your hands to him in prayer!Get rid of your sins,
and leave all iniquity behind you.
Then your face will brighten with innocence.
You will be strong and free of fear.
You will forget your misery;
it will be like water flowing away.
Your life will be brighter than the noonday.
Even darkness will be as bright as morning.
Having hope will give you courage.
You will be protected and will rest in safety.
You will lie down unafraid,
and many will look to you for help.” ~Job 11:13-19
“Since we have such [glorious] hope (such joyful and confident expectation), we speak very freely and openly and fearlessly.”
-2 Corinthians 3:12 AMP
Jesus has said “follow me” to our family, and so we go. We go to fish for people and to gather in those who are lost. We go to be His hands and declare His life saving message to people who are waiting for someone to tell them and no matter what happens, I will remain anchored in Hope.
“I am not afraid….. I was born to do this.”
~Joan of Arc