Jimmy hadn’t allowed the reality of social unrest, danger, and discomfort to keep him from traveling to one of the poorest countries in the world to encourage ministry couples. The steady stream of text messages to our team back home revealed the challenges he encountered. “Okay, boys, activate the prayer line. We’ve gone ten miles in the last two hours. . . . Car has overheated a dozen times.” Transportation setbacks meant that he arrived just before midnight to preach to those who’d waited for five hours. Later we received a text with a different tone. “Amazing, sweet time of fellowship. . . . About a dozen people came forward for prayer. It was a powerful night!”
Faithfully serving God can be challenging. The exemplars of faith listed in Hebrews 11 would agree. Compelled by their faith in God, ordinary men and women faced uncomfortable and unfathomable circumstances. “Some faced jeers and flogging, and even chains and imprisonment” (v. 36). Their faith compelled them to take risks and rely on God for the outcome. The same is true for us. Living out our faith may not take us to risky places far away, but it may well take us across the street or across the campus or to an empty seat in a lunchroom or boardroom. Risky? Perhaps. But the rewards, now or later, will be well worth the risks as God helps us.