The bell rang, school was out and she came running . . . I mean walking really fast (cause its school and well you aren’t supposed to run in school). . . toward me. She was beaming ear to ear. “Dad, I GOT STUDENT OF THE MONTH!” Josie was ecstatic. Every month a student is selected from each class that has demonstrated predetermined character traits, and this months character trait was courage. Now this whole student of the month thing is a big deal on a number of levels:
1. Just yesterday, Josie told my wife, “I never get student of the month.” As we were walking home today, she said, “God must have heard me say that! Cause look at me now!’ I absolutely believe that God heard her say that. I believe He is concerned about the things that concern us, and as the ultimate Father who loves her more than I could ever dream, He loves to give His children good things.
2. Now if you know Josie, you know that she is energetic, full of life and personality. But you may not know that at times she is afraid of her own shadow. She hates to be upstairs in the house by herself. She stresses about homework, grades, and keeping folks happy more than any kid in our house. So to be called “courageous” by her teacher, is a pretty big deal. Some time ago, I was praying for all of my kids, and God allowed me to see them years down the road as an adult. As I was praying for Josie, I saw her walking away from me with a backpack on her back, and she was heading toward what looked like an African village. I truly believe God was showing me that Josie will one day go to the mission field; when, where, or how long doesn’t really matter to me, I just know what I sensed as I prayed for her. I actually questioned God a little on that. “Really God? She seems so fearful sometimes.” Since that time I’ve had these faint glimpses of courage inside of her, like a seedling so young and tender, that would one day grow into a tall tree, majestic and strong. So to hear that someone else could see what I have seen in her, was nothing short of a confirmation.
I believe so many people walk around, without a true picture of who they really are and the character they possess. But God sees, and if we can truly learn to trust the fact that He made us, fearfully and wonderfully, then we can do absolutely anything He calls us to do.
You’ve heard the worn out adages, but they are none the less true:
“God doesn’t call the equipped, He equips the called,” and one of my favorites, “God doesn’t care about your ability, as He does about your availability.”
So, to my Jo – Dad is more proud of you than you’ll ever know. I knew you were courageous, and I know that God will use the courage He has placed inside of you to do amazing things in this world.
And to you my mystery reader – Don’t get down on yourself if you feel like you aren’t the man or woman you wished you could be. I believe that whatever you have need of in your life, God is a loving Father who knows how to give good gifts. Be it a word of affirmation, or courage, or strength, or patience, or something else, God can give you what you need. You never know, that very thing may already be planted inside of you. Let Him water it, and it will grow!