Saturday, October 29, 2011

Homily 33: The Courage to Do (as preached by an orthodox rebel)

"I send thee unto them, and then shall thou say unto them, 'Thus saith the Lord God.' And they, whether they will hear or whether they will refuse..., they shall know that there hath been a prophet among them." Eze. 2:4b-5

As Christians, we cannot measure our "success" in any quantitative sense. Successful faith is not in numbers but in doing. Too many today have a subconscious business model of faith: "If I am going to trust God, then such and such must be accomplished." The only thing that "must be accomplished" is for you to trust God. Results are not your concern. You cast the seeds about like sparks. Another comes and fans the flames, but the success of the blaze is not ultimately up to you. It will increase in heat and power as the Lord sees fit. That is what He was saying to Ezekiel, and that is what He is saying to us: "Have the courage to do, and leave the rest to me."

The only true courage worthy of the name is the courage to do, a courage indifferent to controlling outcomes or hedging bets. Courage based on success ratios is opportunistic courage, which is just another form of cowardice. If we really knew what we were up against: all of the malicious, slobbering horror of Sin and the cunning, foolproof wiles of the Devil; in short, if we really knew the full scope of our adversary, then none of us would be opportunistically courageous. We would not (and do not) have the poisonous luxury of waiting for the right time to act. The only right time is the present, and the only successful action is the one done out of faith in God. Whether or not you succeed in human terms is irrelevant. Strictly speaking, we all fail in "human terms," for the preaching of the Cross is foolishness to those who are perishing (I Cor. 1:18). The only terms that matter are God's terms, and His terms are simple: whether they hear you or not, go in faith, doubting nothing, and I will show you great and mighty things.

-Jon Vowell (c) 2011

1 comment:

  1. Makes sense. I like the fire analogy.