In a Zoom online staff meeting, I heard how our worship arts youth were putting on a video for our worship service. It was mentioned that each of the youth had to send in a video of them singing the song - a solo! Then everyone would be put together. Some of them were scared and some said they could not sing well but they would do it and they did. Some hid in their rooms alone to do the video. This stuck with me all week! I can promise you that Jill Newsome would never do that! I was so impressed with these youths! All week, I thanked God for them and their courage!
Sunday morning came and they were amazing. Immediately, I was brought to tears by their courage. What a blessing they were as their light shone. One of our pastors did a devotional Monday morning about the group singing, “let your light shine”. Matthew 5:14-16, “You are the light of the world. A city that is set on a hill cannot be hidden. Nor do they light a lamp and put it under a basket, but on a lamp stand, and it gives light to all who are in the house. Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works and glorify your Father in heaven.” The message was that we should be like those youth, who through their actions, proclaimed the good news and let His light shine in this time of darkness and even death. And they did this for God's glory! Courage made victory possible!
I think there are a lot of people facing fear right now. With the Covid-19, we are avoiding large gatherings, maintaining at least 6 feet between people and avoiding crowds. These restrictions, alone, have some people facing fear. Some people are fearful of the unknown. Again, I thought about the fear some of those youth had about videoing themselves singing. Fear grips people and can paralyze us from doing what God wants us to do. Fear is one of Satan’s biggest tools. To be courageous is not being fearless, but refusing to give in to fear.
Joshua 1: 7, “Be strong and very courageous.” The Bible is full of courageous people. Abram left his homeland to follow the Lord. Moses marched in before Pharaoh demanding, “let my people go!” Young David went to meet Goliath! Joshua was about to take over Moses’ place. I cannot imagine how scared they all were. God’s first words to Joshua were about courage. Three times he told Joshua, “be strong and courageous.” Fear was their reaction but courage was their decision based on their faith.
2 Samuel 10; 12, “Be of good courage, and let us be strong for our people and for the cities of our God. And may the LORD do what is good in His sight.” Courage is putting our hope in Jesus and having the faith to step forward. There are people in our lives who need us to be strong and courageous. As Christians, we need to lead the way and set the example. This is what Ignite did! They were of good courage and shared a message of hope to not only their church families but all of those we do not even know about - literally all around the world!
I thank God for those youth blessing so many people. Let’s all be like Paul, who told his friends, in 1 Corinthians 16: 13, “Be on your guard; stand firm in the faith; be courageous; be strong.”