A few years ago, I was attending the Global Leadership Summit with several other Mission staff members. The GLS is an event hosted by Willow Creek Church in Chicago every year, and it is broadcasted to cities like Denver and even other countries around the world. As part of the event that year, they broke a clay pot and asked the audience to come up and get a piece of the broken pot. Then they asked us to write a word on our piece that best represented what we would need that next year. Lastly, we were asked to pray and ask God to give us what we had written, and to keep that piece of clay as a reminder.
I am looking at that piece of clay as I write this. Written on it is the date, 8/12/11, and the word “Courage.” As it turns out, courage is what I needed, not only for 2011, but for the last six years.
Sometimes when we struggle with a tough decision at the Mission—something that will cause us to have to trust God to provide—my staff will laugh when I place “the Courage Rock” on the table. Though it is just a small piece of a broken work of art, it is a great reminder that God is in control and we are not. We are called to be faithful to him, to trust that he will provide. Our strength (and courage) comes from the Lord, the maker of heaven and earth.
Courage is also something that men and women in our New Life Program need. When they come to us, they have been trying to use their own strength, and they feel weak and helpless. But in the New Life Program, they find their courage in the Lord to accept the challenge of changing their situations. Through relationships with our staff and volunteers, the love of Jesus is shared and their lives are forever changed.
Being in this work, as a staff member or participant, takes courage. “The Courage Rock” is just a reminder to all of us that we have to trust God for all we do.
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