The following is an email devotional I sent out to the ladies in our small group.
Hey gorgeous gals!
Hope you all had a wonderful Easter weekend!
Brad’s Easter message was so encouraging, wasn’t it? (If you missed it, it will be posted here soon: http://www.tworiverschurch.org/703611.ihtml.)
I’ve been thinking a lot lately about the idea of living outside of our comfort zone. I had dinner the other night with Lynda… Lori and Michelle’s mom. As we conversed, Lynda made a small circle with her hands in front of her and called it the “comfort zone”… then pointed to an unseen point just up and to the right, and called it “where the ‘magic’ happens.” I decided to illustrate it – look at the picture:
Isn’t that true though? Not necessarily about real ‘magic’, but how when we step out into faith, God swoops in and shows up in a big way. In a way, it feels like ‘magic’ is happening when we experience Him in those places.
Just think about some of the people we have been reading about lately in Eat This Book.
Gideon was just doing his own farming thing, when the angel of the Lord showed up (Judges 6). Gideon could have said, “I’m sorry, you’ve got the wrong guy… I’m just a farmer. I like my little comfort zone, so I’ll just stay here. Thanks for asking though!” Who would have defeated the Midianites then? Who would have torn down the altars to Baal? Who would have obeyed the Lord and seen entire armies defeated with only a few hundred men?
We never would have heard about Gideon if he had said “no thanks.”
Ruth (I just love her!) was just living life when tragedy struck. She had a decision to make – go home to her parents’ house where things were familiar, or travel to a foreign land (which probably had strange food and customs from her perspective) with her beloved mother-in-law, Naomi. If Ruth had gone home like her sister-in-law Orpah did, she never would have met Boaz. Without Boaz, there could be no David… one of the most beloved kings of Israel.
Ruth’s name would not be in the genealogy of Jesus if she had stayed in her land.
And David… there are so many times David could have stayed in his comfort zone. He could have remained a shepherd and refused the anointing of Samuel as king. He could have stayed home instead of traveling to the battle lines. He could have hidden with the rest of the armies of Israel when Goliath stepped forth.
David was described as a “man after God’s own heart” because of his passionate obedience to the Lord. He was always stepping out to where the ‘magic’ happens.
But then there was the time when David did stay in his comfort zone; he was home when the kings were at war. As we read just today, he saw a beautiful woman and one thing led to another, and he ended up committing sin upon sin to cover up his transgression.
In the New Testament we’ve got Peter, who literally stepped out of his comfort zone. Right out of the boat and into the storm, and some serious ‘magic’ happened.
What about people in a little more recent history?
Mother Teresa of Calcutta could have lived a simply life as a nun in a monastery. Instead she felt the call of God to ‘step out’ and minister in India. She entered the world of the poor, and God surely met her there. No one can deny that ‘magic’ definitely happened through her life. She had one of the most profound missions that impacted people all over the world.
And all Mother Teresa did was to step out and follow her Jesus on an adventure. And the outcome was huge.
It is easy to think, “Yeah, but that was __________.” They may seem super-human or super-spiritual, but they were people… just like us. There was nothing special about them. In fact, we have something that most of them did not have: the Holy Spirit.
And just look at our own Joy – she’s about to step out of her comfort zone in a big way! And I assure you, there will be some serious ‘magic’ happening there!
And these ‘step out’ moments are calls to small obediences. He might be calling us to something bigger than we think we can do, but there is always a first step.
-Is God calling you to something big? Is He asking you to get out of your comfort zone?
-What is that first step He’s calling you to right now?
-Is there a fear holding you back? Read 2 Timothy 1:7. Then confess that fear to the Lord and ask Him to fill you with boldness to be faithful.
The thing about being where the ‘magic’ happens… it starts as soon as you leave your comfort zone; within the first inch. Then the further you go the more ‘magic’ you get to experience.
In fact God’s calling me to step out of my comfort zone and into a new adventure right now. It’s a little scary, but I also can’t wait to see what ‘magic’ He makes happen out here! (I will share more soon about what that adventure is.)
Time to get out of that comfort zone! Happy adventuring!
Love you girls,