Each week he manoeuvres them on and off the cross-channel ferry and traverses the motorways of Ireland and Great Britain, frequently having to negotiate heavy traffic, narrow town streets and some tight corners!
Ironically he says the bigger the rig, the easier it is to turn. I’ve accompanied him on a ‘smaller’ grain lorry (a mere 32 tons when loaded) up some narrow farm lanes and I believe him. Nothing focusses the mind like the size of the challenge!
Some of us might prefer a quiet, simple, easy life and pick modest, more apparently ‘feasible’ challenges but actually it’s when we feel most intimidated - that’s when the adrenaline really starts pumping.
For those who want to know and serve God it’s more than adrenaline. It’s His Spirit prompting, guiding, equipping and empowering. And more than equal to the task are the resources the Almighty employs!
After His resurrection Jesus ascended back to His Father leaving a handful of followers with a seemingly impossible challenge. ‘Go and make disciples of all nations.’ This ‘Great Commission’ remains the task of the Church, every Christian worldwide.
There is nothing modest nor safe about this challenge. Some people will be hostile or indifferent to the message. Our own folk will betray us. It may cost us our jobs, homes or even lives here on earth.
But then we remember Jesus said faith can move mountains, that with God everything is possible, that we would do ‘greater’, more and wider things than Him for His glory, with divine character and power through the presence of the Holy Spirit. Most preciously He promised He would be with us.
One of the lesser known heroes of the Bible is Old Testament character Nehemiah. He enters the story in the 5th century BC when Jerusalem is in ruins and national recovery seems way too big to even dream. But Nehemiah is passionate about his God and his community so he prays and sets to work, rebuilding city walls and getting the teacher/priest Ezra to start teaching the people God’s Word again.
It becomes a time of national revival both economically and spiritually. While it is initially humbling, people having to acknowledge sinful failures of the past, it turns to widespread rejoicing in the rediscovery of God’s grace and love. In ch.8v10 Nehemiah encourages the people with these words:
‘This day is sacred to our Lord. Do not grieve for the joy of the Lord is your strength.’
The 21st century is no less challenging. But the words of Jesus are no less powerful for those who believe and will attempt great things for Him! In obedience to His calling we discover strength and joy!