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Am I up to the challenge?

Dear Friends,

For the past few years, I have permitted the pressures of running a Christian ministry and business (a summer sports camp) to create quite a few sleepless nights. The details don’t really matter, but the fact is that I have struggled like never in my life to do all the work required to operate this little summer sports camp. Many, many weeks I simply don’t know how I will make it. At times the challenges for me, one limited in every way, seem insurmountable—nd this has been going on for for over ten years now.

Am I on the right path? That’s what the enemy keeps suggesting to me. It’s the “second guessing” and his attempts to cause me to bring into question God’s goodness or approval that really eats at me during the wee hours of the morning.

Am I listening to Him? Am I carefully watching for His signs? Am I reading the events unfolding in my life circumspectly? These are the taunts of the enemy —- the very things that steal sleep and peace. It is the unknown about why things are happening and the question of if I am properly reacting that grieves me. Am I being an idiot for not giving up on all that I am doing, or am I a “mighty warrior” that will one day be vindicated……or am I something else——perhaps “a foolish warrior”?

Should I (if it were possible) to listen to all the advice and criticism that my friends (some descended from the lineage of Job’s friends) throw upon me? Or at my own peril do I ignore their well-intended counsel? And how to know the difference from the godly advice and the unhelpful sort?

But then I wonder: Isn’t this what faith is? Am I not a living witness of a disciple of Jesus precisely because I do NOT know what will happen next, in terms of the details and timing? Does not living such a life of blindness prove that I do TRUST that He does know what will happen as well as all the details and timing?

Have I surrendered all of this to Him? That means giving it ALL up with no suggestions to God as to how He could/should handle this, but 100% abandonment and yielding to whatever He wants.

Yes, yes, I know this and have “re-learned” many times, so why can’t I remember this? Because I am living in a fallen world where it is uncommon and uninspiring to live by faith. We talk about how much we admire and appreciate those that steadfastly believed in God, but few of us are ready to be thrown into a lions’ den, a fiery furnace, the belly of a fish, or wander about the wilderness for years or stand in front of a tyrant and not flinch! We want to hear about such heroes—-but what if He determines to use you——or me—-to inspire? Are we up for it?

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