By Toni Ford
A couple of months ago, I started a prayer group. One of the members in our group continued to bring up the word “courage.” Each time he mentioned the word, he emphasized the need for courage today amongst the body of believers. I didn’t pay him much attention in the beginning, but as I continued to watch the changes taking place in America and across the world, I started paying more attention to this word and its meaning.
As recently as last week, I was able to be a part of hosting Sean Feucht and his worship team for a luncheon. Sean and his team have been traveling from city to city leading outside worship events since the pandemic hit the U.S. in March of 2020. Sean was scheduled to host a worship event in our city that evening, so about 30 of us had the honor of hosting Sean and hearing him share all the ways he is seeing the Lord move across our nation over the past 11 months since he started these outdoor worship events.
Tony shared how he is seeing the beginning of a great revival breaking out across America. It was so inspiring to hear about all the changed lives and miracles taking place. Afterwards, I was asked Sean what the No. 1 thing was that we as believers could do to help continue and gather behind the revival the Lord wants to bring in America. He said, “Pray for courage, for every believer will need to have greater courage in the days ahead to stand up for what is right and according to God’s Word.”
Tony’s answer surprised me, but I thought to myself, “There is that word again – courage!” Webster’s Dictionary defines courage as “mental or moral strength to venture, persevere and withstand danger, fear or difficulty.”
At the luncheon that day, I knew the Lord was telling me to dig deeper into my understanding of this word and be open to learning how the Lord wants to use this in my own life. Therefore, I began to research people in the Bible who had courage as one of their primary qua-lities. There are so many examples throughout scripture, but here are just a few. My prayer is that you will be inspired to learn more about this word for yourself and pray, asking the Lord to develop this quality within you as well.
Rahab. We first read about Rahab in the Book of Joshua, where Joshua sends out two spies from the Israelite camp to scout out the land on the other side of the Jordan River. Joshua 2:1b says, “So the two men set out and came to the house of a prostitute name Rahab and they stayed there that night.” Rahab’s story goes far beyond simply being a harlot or prostitute. She demonstrated tremendous courage by hiding the two spies in her home and protecting them from the Canaanites, who hated the Israelites. As a result, Rahab is known for helping the Israelites defeat the pagan city of Jericho. Although Rahab knew her own life could be in danger, she was willing to risk protecting God’s people, trusting that God would save her and His people as a result. The Lord blessed Rahab by giving her a place in the lineage of Jesus Christ (Matthew 1:5).
Nehemiah. We first see Nehemiah’s courage demonstrated by his willingness to live in a dangerous city and confront a subtle enemy. He had the courage to deal with the traitors among his own people and to call the people back to faithfulness to the Lord. We as believers need this same courage today. God might be calling us to a different city, a city that might not be very popular or safe. Yet God has a purpose for us in that city, which is to bring others to Christ. Nehemiah not only spoke up against the enemy but spoke to his own people – the Jews – and challenged them to put their eyes back on God and seek Him. Nehemiah knew the call God had placed on his life and was determined to not let anyone or anything stand in the way of him completing God’s plan for His people.
Peter. We are all familiar with Peter, one of Jesus’ disciples. We might not remember him at first as a man of great courage, for he was the very one who denied even knowing Jesus three times before Christ’s death and resurrection. As a result of that situation, however, Peter was so repentant that he changed his whole life around. Jesus says this of Peter in Matthew 16:18: “I tell you that you are Peter, and on this rock I will build my church, and the gates of Hades will not overcome it.” After Jesus ascended into heaven, Peter became the leader for the church in Acts of the Apostles, demonstrating great courage as he would stand and speak of Jesus to all the people who gathered!
I believe the Spanish novelist Cervantes said it best when he wrote, “He who loses wealth loses much; he who loses a friend loses more; but he who loses courage loses all.” It is my prayer that we as believers would grow in our courage to stand for the truth and never be ashamed of standing for God and His Word!
If you would like me to join you in prayer please e-mail me at firstname.lastname@example.org. I would love to pray for you!