I’ve had six daughters go through their first year of college, and what I’ve discovered in all of their lives is that your entire world changes.
You’ve got a new set of friends, a new set of desires, a new set of goals. Everything about your life is being challenged. To succeed wildly in this first semester, one of the things that I want to encourage you to do more than anything is to be consistent with your courage. Stay the course. Be courageous.
When Joshua began his ministry career, he faced a huge task, just like you do. And God knew it. In fact, in Joshua 1 we can find a record of three different times where God encouraged Joshua to be courageous. Joshua faced a number of trials throughout his ministry that required him to display his courage in a number of ways, but I just want to mention three of them that he faced right off the bat:
1. He had big shoes to fill.
Joshua had really big shoes to fill! How would you feel if you had to fill the shoes of Moses? You guys also have mountains that you have to climb. And in this first semester, one of the things that you’re going to have to climb is this statement: “I can be courageous and I can face anything that’s in front of me. I can do that because Christ said I could do all things through him.” But it doesn’t feel that way when you’re in a new environment, have different challenges, and you’re being challenged in new ways. This is why it’s so important to recognize that our walk with Christ needs to be courageous in this season. He had big shoes to fill.
2. He felt alone.
Joshua also walked alone through a lot of his ministry. Listen, I want to encourage you that there are times when you’re going to feel alone, and there are times when you’re going to be frightened. There are going to be times when you think, “I can’t do this. I want to go back home. I want to return to what I know.” But look at it through the eyes of courage. Look at it through the recognition that you really can do all things that God has planned for you, that He would never leave you, that He would never forsake you. And He gave you the gift of His Spirit to encourage you, to strengthen you, and draw courage out from you.
3. He faced opposition.
You know what else Joshua faced? He faced opposition. Wherever you’re at, whatever school you’re at, whether you’re commuting, whether you’ve moved out of town… regardless of all that, here’s what I know: you’re going to face opposition. You’re in that season of life where you’re going to have to choose what you really believe and what you really stand for. I want to challenge you and encourage you: don’t forget where you came from. Recognize that God has a plan for you, and part of that plan is that you could overcome the opposition in front of you, and you could truly live with great courage.
There is a guy who lived in Scotland who was confined to his bed for 40 years because he had broken his neck in a fall at age 15. But his spirit remained unbroken, and his courage inspired people so much that he enjoyed a constant stream of guests that wanted to come see him.
One day a visitor said, “doesn’t Satan ever tempt you to doubt God?” And he replied, “Yeah, oh yeah. He does try to tempt me. I lie here and see my old schoolmates driving along in their carriages and Satan whispers, ‘if God is so good why does he keep you here all these years? Why did he permit your neck to be broken?’” “What what do you do when Satan whispers those things into your ear ears?” the guest wanted to know. He replied, “I take him to Calvary, show him Christ, and point to those deep wounds and say, ‘You see, He does love me.’ And Satan has no answer to that. He runs every time.”
Be a person who displays courage in the midst of the trials in this, your first 30 days!
Stay Strong – Be Courageous,
The 140: Copy and Tweet This:
I am courageous and I can face anything that’s in front of me. I can do that because Christ said I could do all things through Him
This devotional is one in Sugar Hill Church’s
First 30 devotional series for college students.
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