Gary Haugen on Choosing Bravery Over Safety

Kent Shaffer —  May 12, 2011

Catalyst Conference Dallas

At Catalyst Dallas, Gary Haugen of International Justice Mission discussed choosing bravery over safety.

When did it begin to occur to the twelve disciples that following Jesus was going to be dangerous?
When did it occur to you that following Jesus is going to be dangerous?

There are two ways to respond to fear: (1) seek to be safer or (2) seek to be braver.

Jesus is in the business of making people who are braver. Jesus is not in the business of making situations safer because he uses unsafe situations to make people braver.

You must make a choice between being safe or brave. Jesus tells us we will suffer for him.

1 Peter 4:19 (NIV)
So then, those who suffer according to God’s will should commit themselves to their faithful Creator and continue to do good.

There are two things that are always God’s will and dangerous:

  1. Telling the truth.
  2. Loving people in need.

If my life in following Jesus, doesn’t feel dangerous I might want to check if I’m actually following Jesus. 1 John tells us that if we see people in need but do not help them then the love of God isn’t even in us.

Isaiah 1:17
Learn to do right! Seek justice, encourage the oppressed. Defend the cause of the fatherless, plead the case of the widow.

Micah 6:8
He has shown you, O mortal, what is good. And what does the LORD require of you? To act justly and to love mercy and to walk humbly with your God.

God is calling all of us to the work of justice, but it is not safe. Do you want to experience your power safely? Or do you want to experience God’s power dangerously?

The Bible says God has not given us a spirit of fear but of power and love and a sound mind.

Further Reading:
2012 Church Conference Calendar

Kent Shaffer

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I live in an RV with my wife and 2 kids and work with OpenChurch.com to help Christians collaborate and build a global Church library of free, open content.