Pastor Tim Webster’s (Uniontown Bible Church) sermon this past Sunday was simply awesome. He taught on the courage shown in Acts 27:13-26 by Paul during a raging storm at sea, and of course he tied it to the suffering and courage of Jesus. The lessons in this message were so many that I could write about it all week!
For now, I am going to focus purely on courage through the storm. Storms in life come in all shapes and sizes. Two things are certain: There will be storms and they will eventually pass.
Storms in life reveal your character. Everyone can be depended upon when things are going smoothly. It takes little courage to walk down easy street….but when the road gets a little rough, this is when courage is needed to continue down the path. For years I was a person of little character in this regard. I can blame my low self-esteem, low self-belief, low confidence…or anything else I choose to blame, but the truth is that I lacked the courage to grow through challenges. I was a repetitive quitter. The first sign of a storm and I was out of the race.
My faith helped me turn this corner in the early 1990s, as did my daily investment in personal development. But as it is written in the bible, “faith without works is dead.” I still had to act. It wasn’t until I stayed strong in the face of a major storm, and didn’t quit that I began to truly understand in my spirit the true power of courage in the face of adversity. This gave me something tangible to build on. A new found sense that if I just persevered through the storms, the best things in life are often on the other side.
When I am working with new people, one of the things I like to know is what kind of adversity have they faced in their life. If they have struggled through difficulties and not had an easy road, I know there is a higher probability that this person will grow through their storms to success. After all, success is not really very difficult, it is just the consistent application of effort to a process that works. The key though is to continue to work through the process while you are in the face of the storms that life will bring.
Remember, courage is not the absence of fear, it is simply working forward in the face of the fear.