The path you are on is the path you are on. There is good reason for you to be on this path.
“Petey, When this starts, take the man at your 11 O’clock out 1st.”
“Ya Ya I seen him.”
The path I have been on has had many up’s and downs. Many left, rights, plenty of turn around and loopy loops, barrel rolls, crossovers ect.
“There must be 15,000 people on the street.”
“Roger, I got some on the roof.”
“Their not firing yet, keep your eye on ‘em.”
“We got an intersection up ahead, hold on, red light.”
“Barrel through like you always do Pete.”
My path has lead me through tough tough times and places.
“Did we all make it through?”
“No. Repeat, No, we lost the trucks behind us. “I’m slowing a bit till they catch up, I have no site of them.”
“They cut our convoy right in half.”
“Roger, the trucks in front should slow too.”
“They ain’t yet.”
“Just me and you now brother.”
“I wouldn’t have it any other way.”
My path usually takes me down roads that few have traveled.
“Just heard a couple pop shots, but I don’t see anyone.”
“I got a man with an RPG. But no clear shot.”
“Just keep an eye on him, we will be past in a second.”
“15,000 people you cannot tell who is who, no idea who the enemy is.”
“I know, don’t fire unless you’re 100% sure.”
God, whatever it takes get us out of this mess. We are in a world of hurt. I will do anything, just get us through this.
“Another RPG’s just went right by, that was close.”
“To close for my comfort.”
My path leads me to uncomfortable situations.
“I got no shot. I don’t see anyone.
“No shot here!!! Musta hid right after the shot.”
“Still no convoy, no place to turn around. Ughhh!!!”
“Keep going Pete.”
“I see them. The convoy is catching up! Come on!!! Faster!!!”
“What are our odd’s”
“Can I give a negative number?”
“There are too many people, we pass by before I can get a clean shot.”
“I got couple more on the roof.”
God, where are You?
“Y’all alright up there? That RPG looked like it hit ya.”
“We’re good, it went right by us and missed.”
“I see the MSR.”
“Ugh, hold on, I ain’t slowing for this turn.”
“Roger, take it wide.”
“Another RPG just went right by us.”
“Hold on!!! Arrrrrrrrrrrr.”
“Ahhhhhhh Baghdad, here we come.”
“Good bye Fallujah.”
“20 warriors in, 20 warriors safely out.”
There is a phrase we use that lets others know nothing’s wrong. It is made from two simple words, contains six letters. The one who says it is filled with tranquility while the one receiving the news can sigh a sign of relief – “I’m safe.”
“Claire, what was that?”
“I’m not sure, it was loud.”
“Ya, woke me up from a nap. Dang, it’s a head on collision, call 911. I’m-a head out there.”
“What do we got?”
“We need to get her out, let’s lay her down on the pavement, she’s hurt bad.”
“She looks pregnant, how she doing?”
“Falling in and out of consciousness.”
“ I got ahold of her left arm,.”
“I got her right.”
“I got her legs.”
“I got her head.”
“Lay her down slow.”
“Claire called 911.”
“Good, she is dying. We need them here fast.”
Father, not this one, not yet, bring her back, please Lord.
“She’s dead, there’s no saving her.”
“I believe in life.”
“I hear sirens.”
“Na, it’s to late. She’s gone.”
“Y’all, this looks like a cross.”
“She’s breathing again.”
“Thank You Father.”
“Clear out, the paramedics are here.”
“Doc, how is she.”
“Pretty banged up, but she will make it.”
“I watched her die in my arms.”
“She’ll be alright, y’all did a good job.”
“We didn’t do anything.”
“Ya we did. I prayed.”
“How’s the baby?”
“The baby is fine. We will take here in for observation.”
“Who did you pray to?”
“God, the Father.”
“Man, wow. He saved her.”
“Yes sir He did.”
“Who is God?”
“Come on Bobby, let’s go have a chat, everyone is safe.”
My path leads to life.
Both of these stories are true. The first one happened in Iraq, 2003 and the second happened in Texas, 2017. The beautiful thing about both of these stories, is that one person at the time of the event prayed to God and God answered. The sad part of each story though, a tragedy had to occur.
Being safe means what you think it means.
The meaning of safe is, free of harm, free of risk, unhurt.
In the book of Samuel we meet a man named David. Now David eventually becomes the second king of Israel, but there is one on the throne already, King Saul. King Saul has a son named Jonathan. David and Jonathan are good friends. Right before a big banquet, David and Jonathan meet, there David tells Jonathan, your dad is trying to kill me. Now Jonathan sticks up for his dad and says no no, he is not, he loves you, you are safe with him. So they device a plan to see just how safe David is. 1 Samuel 20 says,
“And David said to Jonathan, “Indeed tomorrow is the New Moon, and I should not fail to sit with the king to eat. But let me go, that I may hide in the field until the third day at evening. If your father misses me at all, then say, ‘David earnestly asked permission of me that he might run over to Bethlehem, his city, for there is a yearly sacrifice there for all the family.’ If he says thus: ‘It is well,’ your servant will be safe. But if he is very angry, be sure that evil is determined by him.”
I Samuel 20:5-7
David was safe but not the way one would think. The story goes on stating that King Saul was ferrous that David had left and tried to kill him on multiple occasions. Fortunately, David escaped everyone.
Job 21:9 says, “Their houses are safe from fear, Neither is the rod of God upon them.”
Proverbs 29:25 says, “The fear of man brings a snare, But whoever trusts in the Lord shall be safe.”
Being safe means being safe, remember the definition, unhurt.
“I will make a covenant of peace with them, and cause wild beasts to cease from the land; and they will dwell safely in the wilderness and sleep in the woods. I will make them and the places all around My hill a blessing; and I will cause showers to come down in their season; there shall be showers of blessing. Then the trees of the field shall yield their fruit, and the earth shall yield her increase. They shall be safe in their land; and they shall know that I am the Lord, when I have broken the bands of their yoke and delivered them from the hand of those who enslaved them. And they shall no longer be a prey for the nations, nor shall beasts of the land devour them; but they shall dwell safely, and no one shall make them afraid.” Ezekiel 34:25-28
Safe doesn’t mean what you think it means.
Look closely at verse 27, “they shall know that I am the Lord, when I have broken the bands of their yoke and delivered them from the hand of those who enslaved them.”
You can be safe and broken at the same time.
If you go back and reread the stories at the beginning, the first story is about me and a mission I had in Iraq. That night broke me, crushed me. So much happened that night. I was a lukewarm believer in God (I had no idea who Jesus was) but that night turned me away from Him. After Iraq, I chased evil and enjoyed everything dark. So much evil happened in Iraq and I was convinced, God hated me. I felt rejected by Him and accepted by death. I was a trapped slave. But, here is the crazy thing. In my brokenness, God showed me how safe I really was. God used that night & many, many, many others to show how He has always been with me.
The second story is about a friend. An unbeliever who came to Christ by seeing the resurrection power with his very own eyes. That day changed him. The very next weekend, he went to church and began his life following Jesus. His brokenness and sin entrapment was crushed by watching a woman die then come back to life.
For something to live, something has to break, something has to die.
“Most assuredly, I say to you, unless a grain of wheat falls into the ground and dies, it remains alone; but if it dies, it produces much grain. He who loves his life will lose it, and he who hates his life in this world will keep it for eternal life.”
“Jesus took some bread and gave thanks to God for it. Then He broke it in pieces and gave it to the disciples, saying, “This is My body, which is given for you. Do this in remembrance of Me.””
“By this time it was about noon, and darkness fell across the whole land until three o’clock. The light from the sun was gone. And suddenly, the curtain in the sanctuary of the Temple was torn down the middle. Then Jesus shouted, “Father, I entrust my spirit into your hands!” And with those words he breathed his last. When the Roman officer overseeing the execution saw what had happened, he worshiped God and said, “Surely this man was innocent.””
We all say, send me Lord, I want to help bring people to You. But how many of us would be willing to die for that? How many of us would wake up in the morning and say, “yes Lord, plan a car crash right in front of a nonbelievers house, let me die, then come back to life just so Heavenly seeds can be planted.”
“Yes, Lord, send me to war. Let the enemy breakthrough strongholds, let IED’s & RPG’s explode right before my every eyes. Let so much bad happen in my life that I run far far far away from You. Take everything away from my life and at the right time, years later, give it back to me and use my life of an example of redemption.
We all quote Isaiah 6:8, “send me Lord, I’ll go.” But how many of us would give it all up right now to save one more?
Desmond Doss was willing to face the Japanese military by himself without a weapon just to save one more.
Daniel was willing to face death by lions by standing for God when the law said not to.
John the Baptist faced jail time and a beheading just to prepare The Way.
Jesus gave up His entire life for us.
The fiddle legend, Mr. Charlie Daniels wrote a song titled, The Devil Went Down To Georgia. In that song he pinned these lyrics,
“the devil jumped
up on a hickory stump
and said boy let me tell you what
I guess you didn’t know it
but I’m a fiddle player too
and if you’d care to take a dare I’ll make a bet with you
Now you play a pretty good fiddle boy
but give the devil his due
I’ll bet a fiddle of gold
against your soul
’cause I think I’m better than you
The boy said my name’s johnny
and it might be a sin
but I’ll take your bet
and you’re gonna regret
’cause I’m the best there’s ever been”
If you know your not going to be 100% safe but you know you are going to be safe 100% of the time…What stops you from getting out there & saying? “I’ll take your bet & you’re gonna regret because I (serve) the best there’s ever been.”
That is what a fighter does. That is what a warrior does. They walk their path without fear because they truly believe in life.
“You are of God, little children, and have overcome those who have the spirit of the antichrist. Because He who is in you is greater than he who is in the world.” I John 4:4
You have been given the Keys to the Kingdom…What stops you from going out there & opening doors of those locked in sin & bondage?
“And I will give you the keys of the kingdom of heaven, and whatever you bind on earth will be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth will be loosed in heaven.” Matthew 16:19
Listen, I get it, being a Christian is tough, it tough tough. But, nothing is greater then when God uses me to speak to someone, anyone, one of His children.
Now is the time to stand tall and fight for life.
Now is the time to fear being afraid.
Now is the time to loose the chains of bondage on someone else’s life.
Now is the time to enjoy your path.
Now is the time to run forth and finish the race strong.
Now is the time to say this is my family.
“Always remember that Jesus Christ, a descendant of King David, was raised from the dead. This is the Good News I preach.”
2 Timothy 2:8
“I desire therefore that the men pray everywhere, lifting up holy hands, without wrath and doubting;”
I Timothy 2:8
Now is the time to speak the Good News. Use your past. Use your present. Use your future. Tell your story and where your path lead you.
Now is the time to raise your hands high and worship without any fears.
Now is the time to say, send me Lord, send me on my path.
Father, Lord, I pray You speak to everyone who reads or listens to this. Give them the courage to carry out your mission for this hour, this day, this week, this month, year & lifetime. We Love You, our Big Brother Jesus and His best friend the Holy Spirit. Amen.