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Sticks and Stones: The Rumor Mill - Thursday

Posted on Thu, Feb 23, 2017

Don’t lie to each other, for you have stripped off your old sinful nature and all its wicked deeds. Put on your new nature, and be renewed as you learn to know your Creator and become like him.
 
Can you remember the first time you told a lie? Shamefully, mine was about shampooing my hair! I had this routine as a kid where I asked my mom to time me when I showered so I could track how fast I was. One day I came out of the shower with a particularly quick time, and then for some reason my mom asked me if I had washed my hair. I thought about it, remembered not doing it, but then thought to myself, “There’s no way she could know.” So I said, “Yeah I washed my hair.” She asked again. I lied again. She asked a third time, I lied a third time. Thinking the conversation was a bit strange, I slowly raised my hand to up to my head….my hair was as dry as a tumbleweed. Busted. Spankings quickly commenced. Five for each lie. 
 
Why do we lie? And why are we tempted to lie? Though there are certainly many reasons, two are typically toward the top of the list: (1) We want to protect ourselves or (2) we want to promote ourselves. 
 
If we have done something wrong sometimes we try to protect ourselves by sweeping it under the rug, evading the question, redirecting the focus, or by outright lying. 
 
If we want others to think more highly of us sometimes we try to promote ourselves by exaggerating details, embellishing stories, telling one side of the conversation, or by flat out making something up. 
 
Though occasionally our instinct is to think that lying will result in protection or promotion, it always has the reverse effect! Lying brings hurt and shame, not shelter and fame. 
 
Let’s be people who tell the truth and let God be the one to protect us and promote us. Our responsibility is to live and speak with integrity… and then leave the rest to Him. 

Dan Hamel
Teaching Pastor

Sticks and Stones: The Rumor Mill - Wednesday

Posted on Wed, Feb 22, 2017

Instead, we will speak the truth in love, growing in every way more and more like Christ.
 
There is an old Jewish tale of a man who began spreading gossip throughout his village. Everything he said was spun to make himself look a little better and others look a little worse. Without even intending to, he ended up hurting a lot of people. He then humbled himself, sought out the village rabbi, and asked him, “What do I need to do to make it right?” The rabbi responded, “There are two things you need to do. First, take a pillow up to the top of the hill above the town and release the feathers so they are scattered by the wind.” The man was pleased by the ease of the task. After completing it he returned to the rabbi and asked, “What is the second step?” The Rabbi answered, “Go and pick up all the feathers.”
 
Gossip causes real damage. Yes, forgiveness can be given -- both by God and by others -- but even with forgiveness, the damage sometimes remains. Hearts can be wounded. Reputations can be lost. Trust can be eroded. 
 
When we come to the awareness (or conviction) that we have spread gossip, we face a fork in the road. We can try to take the path of least resistance and simply ignore it. Or we can do the right thing by going to the person we gossiped to (and potentially the person we gossiped about), confessing what we did, asking for forgiveness, and earnestly making whatever reparations necessary. Confessing gossip is hard. Really hard. Embarrassing. Intimidating. Humiliating. But right. 
 
Becoming a person of integrity is a double edged blade. Yes, it means we commit to only telling the truth from this day forward. But it also means confronting any gossip or lies from our past, owning up to them, and telling the truth. 
 
  • Ask the Holy Spirit to search your life and highlight any gossip or lies you may have shared, and what you need to do to make it right. 

Dan Hamel
Teaching Pastor

Sticks and Stones: The Rumor Mill - Tuesday

Posted on Tue, Feb 21, 2017

And so blessing and cursing come pouring out of the same mouth. Surely, my brothers and sisters, this is not right! Does a spring of water bubble out with both freshwater and bitter water? Does a fig tree produce olives, or a grapevine produce figs? No, and you can’t draw fresh water from a salty spring.
 
In the middle of World War II the United States government needed to find an effective way of encouraging American citizens to be careful with their speech. If they were too flippant or careless, there was a chance that crucial information could be leaked and lives could be lost. So the memorable phrase was coined and circulated: “loose lips sink ships.” 
 
In the same way that loose lips could eventually lead to wrecked ships, loose lips can eventually lead to wrecked relationships. When you speak about people, does love, goodness, and kindness naturally emerge? Or do you sometimes catch yourself putting people down? Sharing unnecessary and hurtful information? Inflating your own heroics while slightly degrading the status of others? If we aren’t intentional about the purity, integrity, and wholesomeness of our language, our character and our relationships will eventually sink beneath the water. 
 
When a witness takes the stand in a court of law they are asked, “Do you swear to tell the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth, so help you God?” This shouldn’t only be the standard for official courtroom speech; this should be the standard for all our speech. 
 
And we could add another question, too: “Do you swear to speak lovingly, compassionately, and carefully at all times, with the same level of kindness, consideration, and discretion you would want others to show when they speak about you?” 
 
Sometimes we fool ourselves into thinking we gain something by putting others down. The truth is -- we don’t. Sometimes we fool ourselves into thinking think we have the right to share hurtful information. The truth is -- we don’t. 
 
  • As you go throughout this week, strive to protect and promote the reputation of others more so than your own.

Dan Hamel
Teaching Pastor

Sticks and Stones: The Rumor Mill - Monday

Posted on Mon, Feb 20, 2017

Sometimes it praises our Lord and Father, and sometimes it curses those who have been made in the image of God. And so blessing and cursing come pouring out of the same mouth. Surely, my brothers and sisters, this is not right!
 
As a college student, the Lord taught me a memorable lesson about the power of words. Toward the end of a church service someone made an announcement and didn’t do a very good job. It seemed awkward and unprepared. After the service, I saw a friend across the sanctuary, and when I greeted him I began the conversation by making fun of the person who gave the announcement. We laughed a bit and carried on. Little did I know my mentor was within earshot. 
 
A few days later, during our weekly meeting, my mentor handed me a black Sharpie. I was a bit confused at first. He then asked me to remove the cap and make a mark on my index finger. After I did, he said, for every time you use words to make a mark on another person’s life, I want you to take out this marker and make a mark on your hand. It seemed intense, but I agreed. Foolishly I figured his challenge would never even be applicable, as I wasn’t in the habit of gossiping. But by the end of the week, I had black lines all over my hand. 
 
Sometimes, even without intentionally doing it, our language digresses to the point of speaking negatively of others. Others whom we say we love. Others whom we know God loves. And whether we mean to or not, whether we had malicious intentions or not, we make a mark against their life. 
 
James tells us that we are to have consistency with our words. If we use our mouth to praise God, we need to use it to express love of God’s people. Without exception. 
 
  • Take note of your conversations this week. Ask the Spirit to highlight any words you speak that don’t express genuine love for Him or others. 

Dan Hamel
Teaching Pastor

Sticks and Stones: Liar, Liar, Pants On Fire - Friday

Posted on Fri, Feb 17, 2017

Don’t steal. Don’t lie. Don’t deceive anyone.
 
Sadly, it seems many people no longer view lying as dangerous behavior these days. We think that if no one else knows, we somehow “got away with it.” But it’s simply not true. We know. And God knows. He isn’t fooled when we lie. But did you know people around you may also be wise to your game? Pamela Meyer is an expert lie-spotter. In her book, How to Spot a Liar, she shares a few simple ways to tell when someone is not telling the truth. There are easily recognized word choices, body language, facial expressions, and physical actions that come into play when people are telling a lie, faking their smile, pretending they like you, or trying to deceive. Did you know that most people who are making false statements will inadvertently shake their head “no” while lying? Their body cannot help but physically disagree with what they’re saying.
 
With God and ourselves being aware when we lie - and now even others who potentially can see right through us - there’s ultimately not one lie that’s hidden from sight. But, somehow, knowing it will all come out in the end doesn’t seem to be an effective lie-deterrent. Why? We’re short sighted. All of us. And it comes down to two words: sin and selfishness. 
 
In his Confessions, Augustine says we sin to try to make things easier or better for ourselves. But in so doing, we only succeed with inadvertently making things harder or worse in our world. When we sinfully seek to conceal the truth, we truly believe we’re just trying to make things better. But we discover over and over that we can’t keep the toxic radiation from spilling into other areas of our lives. We need God’s help to tell the truth. As we draw near to Him, He develops in us a freedom from fear and approval addiction. He wants us to live in truth. Today.  
 
  • Ask God to guard you from the sin and selfishness that inspires us to lie. Pray He guards you from the temptation to try to manage your life through lying to yourself or others.

Will Briggs
Care Pastor

Sticks and Stones: Liar, Liar, Pants On Fire - Thursday

Posted on Thu, Feb 16, 2017

You certainly will not die.
 
Five little words. The first lie. You certainly will not die. I remember the first time I made a conscious choice to lie. I was in the second grade. It didn’t kill me as far as I can tell. We’d all be dead by now if lies were lethal. So, I got away with it. Or did I? You see, that first lie opened my entire life up to the idea that I might somehow be able to manage impressions. Make people think better of me than they should.
 
The serpent’s lie is the ongoing lie, isn’t it? The half-truth that they wouldn’t die instantly. But as Dietrich Bonhoeffer shared in his book Creation and Fall, they removed God - the source of all life - from the core of their being and placed themselves at the center instead. It was like unplugging an extension cord from the wall and plugging it into itself. By doing so they suffered instant spiritual death. And, eventually, physical death as well, returning to the dust from which they were formed. 
 
They didn’t instantly keel over. I didn’t when I told my first lie. But our lies never fail to flirt with our demise. They are usually aimed at avoiding little deaths. We strive to evade capture. We work relentlessly to avoid being tagged with our sin. We run from dying to self and owning up to the truth that we are sinful and cannot find even a tiny shred of justification or pardon on our own. So we run and hide from this crucifixion of sorts. But it’s never going to be “good enough”.
 
It’s an impossible mission trying to avoid these little deaths all the way to the grave.  Ultimately, we don’t get away with lying. God sees and knows. God came to give us life. And we can begin tasting our forever-life only as we live in truth.
 
  • Replacing lies with truth builds trust and helps our relationships thrive. If you haven’t already this week, settle your decision to tell the truth right now. Tell God about it. And share your decision with a friend.

Will Briggs
Care Pastor

Sticks and Stones: Liar, Liar, Pants On Fire - Wednesday

Posted on Wed, Feb 15, 2017

Don’t lie to one another. You’re done with that old life. It’s like a filthy set of ill-fitting clothes you’ve stripped off and put in the fire. Now you’re dressed in a new wardrobe. 
 
The military base in Germany where we lived while I was in middle school had a little store called the Post Exchange. The P.X. carried a tiny selection of various goods from the States. Just browsing the shelves was like a taste of home. The clothes on the sparsely populated racks were of a style that the local economy hadn’t quite grasped yet. Some of the larger bases had bigger P.X.es. Ours was about as small as you could get. So for example, in 1986 when the new Air Jordan shoes arrived, there were only 3 sizes. If you were a half size or your feet were unusually small or large, you were outta luck. 
 
I was a “skater” back then, so when those orange and yellow Ocean Pacific shorts finally arrived at our P.X… I begged my Mom to buy them for me even though they weren’t exactly my size. I’m not sure how I managed it, but she finally caved in and I proudly donned the (slightly too small) shorts the next day, squeezing my scrawny legs into them. Surely my friends would be dazzled by the embroidered OP logo on the leg, right? Their jealousy of the emblem would cause them to look beyond the fact they were not just small, but way too small. I was thoroughly humiliated that day by the comments from other kids. 
 
I wanted those shorts so badly that I lied to myself. Sure they were genuine. They were the real deal. But they were the wrong size. We have got to stop lying - to ourselves, to others, to God. As today’s Scripture reminds us, we can leave the ill-fitting clothes from that old way of life. Because nothing fits us like the truth.
 
  • Have you tried living with ill-fitting lies? Not sure how to untangle the mess? Give Jennifer a shout to learn more about talking with someone who can help. 

Will Briggs
Care Pastor

Sticks and Stones: Liar, Liar, Pants On Fire - Tuesday

Posted on Tue, Feb 14, 2017

...hypocritical liars, whose consciences have been seared as with a hot iron.
 
My bride had nosebleeds regularly as a child. So much so that she had to have her nosebleeds cauterized. Yeah. Using a tiny hot iron to burn the flesh to stop bleeding and prevent infection. Ouch. I know from a medical perspective, it’s all for good. But you’ll never convince a 5-year-old that this step was a really good idea. No way. 
 
Paul says in today’s Scripture that liars have consciences that have been cauterized. I can only imagine the metaphor. My bride knows what that searing pain actually feels like. But even that eventually heals. And once it’s scarred over, there is reduced sensitivity in that area. So when we lie, it gets easier to lie. At first our conscience might be troubled. But then, it starts to become habit. Half-truths. Shading things to make ourselves look good. Eventually, it doesn’t faze us.
 
In a recent TED Talk, Pamela Meyer, author of the book, How to Spot a Liar, shared a few startling statistics she’s gleaned from decades of research. On average, strangers lie three times in the first few minutes of interacting. (Ever replied, “Fine,” to the question, “How are you doing?” when you really weren’t fine? Busted. Me too.) She goes on to share that we lie more to strangers than to coworkers, extroverts lie more than introverts, men lie eight times more about themselves, women tend to lie to protect other people, married couples lie in 1 in 10 interactions, and unmarried couples 1 in 3. 
 
It’s an epidemic! So how do we get our conscience restored? Make a choice. Determine today to be a truth-teller. Gently, humbly, awkwardly if necessary - but tell others the truth. Tell yourself the truth. And let Jesus heal, restore, and clean your conscience.
 
  • Have you decided to be a truth-teller? How would you feel about taking that a step further and going back to make amends for lies you’ve gotten away with? I dare you to pray about taking that step. Ask God for an opportunity and the words to make it right.

Will Briggs
Care Pastor

Sticks and Stones: Liar, Liar, Pants On Fire - Monday

Posted on Mon, Feb 13, 2017

God can’t stomach liars; he loves the company of those who keep their word.
 
When I went to college, I was painfully car-less. If I didn’t want to walk, I rode my bike. Until one day a friend I’d made in English 109 was going to be away for the weekend and, when I mentioned my dire straits, offered to loan his car to me. Then came the fateful question, “Do you know how to drive a stick?” Awkward pause to cue up the lie: “Uhhhh… of course I can!”
 
He wisely discerned something was amiss, so he made me show him I could drive it. You’d think I’d own up then. But now I wasn’t just lying to him - I’d started lying to myself, as well. (Seriously, how hard could it be? I’ve got this!) We walked all the way to the remote parking lot, climbed in the car, and… he had to tell me how to work the clutch. Next, embarrassingly, he had to back out of the parking spot for me. By the time I got it in gear, it was really clear I wasn’t going to be able to do this. You know how, when you miss the sweet spot with the clutch and you end up doing that shimmy-shake that looks like you’re leading a conga-line? That was me and my friend being wrenched back and forth in our seats until I finally… mercifully… stalled the car.
 
The lie about my stick-shifting skills managed to end that friendship pretty momentously. Nobody wants to hang out with a liar. God made us like Himself in that way… today’s text says God can’t stomach liars; He loves the company of those who keep their word. Sounds like God has pretty good taste in friends. People who say what they mean, mean what they say, act on their commitments. And fess-up freely when they can only drive an automatic.
 
  • Even on our best days, it’s tough becoming all we think we ought to be. There’s no use lying about it. Today, where do you need to let God take the steering wheel and lead you instead of insisting - lying to yourself - that everything is just fine?

Will Briggs
Care Pastor

Level Up: What No One Ever Sees - Friday

Posted on Fri, Feb 10, 2017

At the end of the time set by the king to bring them in, the chief official presented them to Nebuchadnezzar. The king talked with them, and he found none equal to Daniel, Hananiah, Mishael and Azariah; so they entered the king’s service. In every matter of wisdom and understanding about which the king questioned them, he found them ten times better than all the magicians and enchanters in his whole kingdom.  
 
My husband stands out in any crowd. Not only because he’s six-foot-three. He’ll always be the one with his head bent toward someone, imparting some nugget of wisdom the Lord has taught him. He’s impressive in so many ways, but of this I am sure: when he’s in a room, deep conversations ensue. I’ve often found myself in awe of how he cuts to the chase and reaches people’s hearts. He has a gift for getting people to talk freely. He’s amazing, for sure. 
 
That’s how I see Daniel and his friends. They were so confident and sure of their God that they couldn’t help but impress the king. They turned their faces to their King, and He filled them up with wisdom and wonders. See, when God fills a heart, it just oozes out of us. Daniel also chose a wise community of friends. Hananiah, Mishael, and Azariah had his back, and he theirs. We are shaped by the company we keep. Make no mistake about that. Maybe you need to consider linking arms with some solid buds. 
 
I once knew a girl who decided to walk closer to Jesus in her life. I called her one day. Her voicemail said: “Sorry I missed your call, but I’m busy making some changes in my life. I may return your call soon. If I don’t, you might be one of those changes!” 
 
May you be outstanding in all you do, friend. May you be willing to make changes as you pursue obedience, character, and integrity -- the life of peace brought by joyful and consistent obedience. 
 
  • What is something that has amazed you as you have pursued obedience, character, and integrity in your life? Time to level up, friend.   

Rebecca Hatton
Care Support Leader

Level Up: What No One Ever Sees - Thursday

Posted on Thu, Feb 09, 2017

At the end of the ten days they looked healthier and better nourished than any of the young men who ate the royal food.
 
The result of having character and integrity in a life is that we just look better! I really love that thought! My sweet Little Mama was the godliest woman I ever knew. Hers was a life marked by living for Jesus, doing what was right, and praying about absolutely everything in between. At the end of her days, people often commented on how beautiful she was. She had virtually no wrinkles, even in her sixties. She looked much younger than her years. No one will ever convince me it was for any reason other than the fact that she turned her face toward her Savior and never looked away. 
 
Ten days. Daniel, Hananiah, Mishael, and Azariah were on a vegetable and whole grain diet. They were not weak. They were not worn out. They were not weary. Instead, they looked stronger than the other guys in the king’s training program. I find it interesting that the incorporation of obedience into a life does not diminish the life. Rather, it enhances it. It fills us with peace, joy and, confidence. The life that doesn’t adhere to God’s precepts… just the opposite. Chaos, disturbance, and fear fill the heart of the disobedient. 
 
To be called to obedience and to refuse or turn away is to be double-minded. The Bible says the double-minded are unstable in all they do. (James 1:8) I don’t know about you, but at the end of my life, I pray that my countenance is serene and joy-filled. I pray I will sense the pleasure of my King. And that I will have looked so long at His face, I know His every feature. It’s Botox for the soul!
 
  • What would the Lord have you release to better experience His pleasure and peace?    
  • Find a way to get alone with the Father today. Speak, friend, for your Father listens.

Rebecca Hatton
Care Support Leader

Level Up: What No One Ever Sees - Wednesday

Posted on Wed, Feb 08, 2017

Please test your servants for ten days: Give us nothing but vegetables to eat and water to drink. Then compare our appearance with that of the young men who eat the royal food, and treat your servants in accordance with what you see.  
 
I could never be a vegetarian. Now, before you write me about how heartless a creature I am to eat something that has a mother, know that I respect and admire you greatly. I wish I could do it. I do. I’d be hungry all the time, but I’d probably be healthier! 
 
Daniel and his friends agree to become vegetarians for 10 days to prove a point. They do not wish to survive and thrive apart from God’s blessing. Wow. That’s an awesome statement. How often do you and I find it just fine to thrive apart from God’s blessing? 
 
We have become so casual toward a holy and righteous God that we forget He’s the same God who wiped out Sodom and Gomorrah with the snap of His finger. The same God who parted the Red Sea with one breath from His mouth, allowing His people to cross over on dry land. The same God whose mighty arm raised Jesus Christ from the dead, ending forever the separation of His people from Himself. 
 
Oh, may I never take that knowledge casually again! Daniel and his friends were determined to maintain their integrity. And what is integrity? Consistent joyful obedience. If joyful obedience is character, then integrity is what happens in the life of a consistently obedient person. 
 
It’s what tells you to turn in the wallet full of cash you found. It’s what makes me walk all the way back to canned foods to put back those green beans I decided not to buy. It’s wholehearted devotion to the One who has the right to rule and make the rules. It’s integrity that will help us experience blessing from the hand of God. 
 
Be blessed, friend. I’m off to have a cheeseburger. 
 
  • Has there ever been a time when it would have been easier to do what was wrong than what was right? When you did what was right anyway, how did that feel?  

Rebecca Hatton
Care Support Leader

Level Up: What No One Ever Sees - Tuesday

Posted on Tue, Feb 07, 2017

Now God had caused the official to show favor and sympathy to Daniel, but the official told Daniel, “I am afraid of my lord the king, who has assigned your food and drink. Why should he see you looking worse than the other young men your age? The king would then have my head because of you.” 
 
Character is what you do in the dark, when no one is watching. Character is between you and Jesus. Daniel did something full of character in yesterday’s verse. “He asked the chief official for permission not to defile himself …” (Daniel 1:8). What respect he demonstrates! He’s captive in a foreign land, yet shows great deference to his captor’s representative, asking permission to keep his promise to his God. 
 
The official is clearly taken aback, immediately filled with fear. He knew his king to be a man of great intimidation and anger. He dared not disappoint him in any way, lest the axe fall. But Daniel knew his King to be compassionate, slow to anger, and abounding in love (Joel 2:13). 
 
Daniel could fearlessly ask permission to maintain his values. Because he was certain of his King’s love, he displayed boldness. Daniel’s character never waned. Who would have known if he’d eaten the food? Who would have known if he’d sampled the wine? Yet Daniel wanted to do the right thing. 
 
Character is joyful obedience, emanating from a heart tuned to the Father’s love. I like the fact that Daniel did not want to sin in any way. In his pivotal book, Finishing Strong, Steve Farrar says, “Sin will take you farther than you wanted to go, keep you longer than you wanted to stay, and cost you more than you wanted to pay.” Your character, good or bad, will long outlast you, friend. Don’t forget that. Even in the dark. 
 
  • Is there anything holding you captive from leveling up in character in your life?  
  • Today, ask the Lord to reveal any action or attitude that has kept you from living in the daylight. Submit it to His authority, and pay attention to what real peace feels like.  

Rebecca Hatton
Care Support Leader

Level Up: What No One Ever Sees - Monday

Posted on Mon, Feb 06, 2017

But Daniel resolved not to defile himself with the royal food and wine, and he asked the chief official for permission not to defile himself this way.
 
Lately I’ve felt God nudging me, dealing with some key areas in my life; challenging me to “level up” in obedience, character, and integrity, to name just a few. Listen, I’m a rule follower. If the light is yellow, I at least try to stop. If I decide I don’t need the green beans in my grocery cart, I don’t set them down in the bread aisle. I take them back to the green bean aisle. Rule follower. 
 
I can still see my Little Mama’s face. In those rare (okay, not so rare) times I was disobedient, she would roll her eyes toward the heavens and declare, “Rebecca, I wish you no physical harm. Just a child like yourself, someday.” 
 
It should be no wonder, then, that I got two… very much like me. She’s smiling right now, elbowing Jesus and having a giggle. How about you? Do you like to obey? Do you like the idea that there are things and people you must obey? See, it’s one thing to simply do what’s right. It’s totally another to love doing what’s right. One is about obligation. The other, surrender. One leads to captivity. The other, freedom. 
 
Daniel decided to simply obey God. Even though he’d been taken to a place of differing beliefs, habits, and values, he’d remain faithful to God’s precepts in Babylon. You might be asking, “What’s the big deal about food and wine?” You see, Daniel knew the food’s first portion was offered to idols, and some of the wine was poured out on pagan altars. 
 
To partake of the delights that offend a righteous and holy God has consequences. To partake may cost your influence, your reputation. To partake may cost your life. How about you? Will you choose to obey God’s precepts in Babylon? Will you be taken captive by a corrupt and dying culture, or will you choose to love obedience and level up? 
 
  • In what ways do you show obedience to the Lord? In what ways have you withheld obedience? 

Rebecca Hatton
Care Support Leader

Uncommonwealth: Uncommon Risk - Friday

Posted on Fri, Feb 03, 2017

Suddenly there was a massive earthquake, and the prison was shaken to its foundations. All the doors immediately flew open, and chains of every prisoner fell off...
The jailer called for lights and ran to the dungeon and fell down trembling before Paul and Silas. Then he brought them out and asked, “Sirs, what must I do to be saved?”
They replied, “Believe in the Lord Jesus and you will be saved, along with everyone in your household.” 
 
In 1976, a struggling actor/writer named Sylvester Stallone was fighting to make ends meet. He had a baby on the way, a bullmastiff he couldn’t afford to feed, and no rent money for his Hollywood apartment. Determined to make it, the young actor sat down and, in fewer than four days, wrote a screenplay that had producers salivating. As the legend goes, Stallone turned down some six figure offers for the screenplay that didn’t allow him to play the lead role, and instead settled for an $18,000 paycheck - and a 10% share of the film - that did. The movie was Rocky, which skyrocketed Stallone to fame (and has now grossed over $100 million). While it’s likely that elements of this classic Hollywood “rags to riches” story have been embellished over the years, the fact remains: Stallone took some significant risks in pursuit of his dreams...and those risks have paid off.
 
The same is true when it comes to the life of faith. Uncommon Risk leads to Uncommon Opportunity!
 
The risk that started when Paul and Silas spoke to a slave girl led to an even greater opportunity to display God’s power and glory. As a result of their bold faith a jailer and his family came to faith in Jesus. When we are faithful with the opportunities God gives us, risky as they may seem, He will entrust us with even greater opportunities to serve and know Him! 
 
  • Consider taking a risk by starting an unexpected friendship, and see what God does with that. Contact our Serve the City or Mentoring coordinators to help you take that step. 

Dan Jackson
Campus Leader - Georgetown


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