Daring to Serve

“I had never done anything daring for the kingdom before.” So said John as we sat at the table while the evening darkened the sky above us and the breeze from the ocean picked up.
Vicki, Leila, and I listened to John’s story. We’d come to Recife, on Brazil’s northeastern coast, for me to speak at a regional lectureship. People from this area of the country have gathered to hear great lessons on Fidelity, but I was hearing and seeing perhaps a greater one still.
John worked in another coastal city as a chef. In a country where the minimum salary is $162, John was earning $1860 for his specialized skills.
But he worked long hours, which kept him from participating in many activities, meetings, and projects with his congregation.
And he had the desire to become a full-time evangelist.
In the large residential complex where he lived, a new congregation had recently begun.
On faith, John, with a wife and a three-year-old son, quit his job to earn one minimum salary for his beginning monthly income. He dared to serve and pursue his dream.
Some would call him foolhardy or impetuous.
I call him exemplar.
John knows he can’t live on this amount forever. He trusts that more funds will appear. But he knew he couldn’t wait to see the “color of the money,” as Brazilians say, before acting.
He dared to serve.
A Nehemiah dared to dream of rebuilding his city’s walls.
An Ezra dared to teach a nation destitute of the knowledge of God.
A Jeremiah dared to prophesy to a people deaf to divine appeals.
A Paul dared to throw respectability to the wind for a crucified Lord.
Christians dared to become the food of lions for an unseen hope.
Preachers dared to cross racial and social barriers to offer a way to the unknown God.
I go home tomorrow from Recife knowing that my two lessons shared during the lectures were well-received, but dwarfed by a more eloquent sermon. And that I was taught a greater dare over a supper table than I had spoken over two days.
What are you daring to do to serve the Lord?

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J. Randal Matheny

Servant of the Lord at GoSpeak
Randal and his wife have lived and worked in Brazil since 1984. They have three children, two daughters-in-law, and five grandchildren. Randal's a lefty, a chocolate lover, an author and a poet. His microblog is randal.us.

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