Stronger than Fear
God showed up in my darkest hour
Thursday, September 22, 2016
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1. How did your time in an Iranian prison shape your relationship with God?
Throughout our lives we long for tangible signs that God is good and that he loves us. Being imprisoned in Iran was one of those. I have always believed in the sovereignty of God, but seeing God take care of me and rescue me from prison was an indelible stamp on my heart that he is all-powerful.
My relationship with God was also shaped by how merciful he was too me. My time in prison brought me to the end of myself. At my lowest, God showed me mercy. When I was at my worst, he loved me and cared for me.
2. How did you find the courage to go back to the field?
To be honest, I don't think I found the courage, I simply wanted to love Jesus more than ever! As a follower of Jesus we are invited to discover his love again and again. As we do, we fall in love with him and simply want to love him back by doing what he wants. John 14:15 says, "If you love me, you will obey me."
Since my time in prison, I have been called by God to go back to the Middle East a couple times a year. When I feel called, my love for God simply causes me to go. Many times I have felt without courage and many times felt weak, but it's been the simple love of God that gets me out of bed and helps me obey him no matter the cost.
3. You wrote that "getting over" fear isn't the goal of our faith, but living to discover and know God is. How has that changed your perspective on fear?
Throughout my journey I have struggled with fear. I often spent all my time and energy [trying] to get over my fear. This became so overwhelming and often didn't get rid of it. As I began to switch my attention to simply knowing and enjoying God, I [became] overwhelmed by how good he is.
As the peace and joy of the Lord has grown in my life, I have realized that's what I actually wanted all along. As I get consumed with Jesus, my fears seem to fade away.
4. Knowing what you know now, would you still have gone to Iran?
This is a great question. Of course I would never want to go through that harrowing experience again. But, I hope I would still have gone. Why? Jesus loves me and I want to do what he wants. Maybe that sounds too simple. But to be honest, I believe the Christian journey is meant to be. I hope no matter what the cost and no matter what could happen to us, because of our love for Jesus we would be willing to do what he wants!
A Fresh Look at Fear
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