"Build your kingdom here, let the darkness fear. Show your mighty hand, heal our streets and land. Set your church on fire, win this nation back. Change the atmosphere, build your Kingdom here, we pray!" - Rend Collective Experiment, Build Your Kingdom Here
I grabbed my cell phone, like I do every morning and check my emails. I went through and deleted most that don't interest me and saved one to read at a later time.
I receive her emails and updates on a regular basis. And read almost every single one. I sat in on two of her classes during last years, Christian Alliance for Orphan's Summit. Her story intrigued me and her mission encouraged me. I was anticipating this particular email as she had shared in a previous email that she was going to share a story of her "little Angel". Once settled into the morning with time to read, I grabbed my phone and pulled up her email where she linked to a sound bite from one of her speaking engagements. As she set the stage to share the story of her "little Angel", she encouraged the church she was speaking at with a verse:
"And now I'm going to tell you who you are, really are. You are Peter, a rock. This is the rock on which I will put together my church, a church so expansive with energy that not even the gates of hell will be able to keep out." - Matthew 16:18 MSGI'll stop here. I strongly suggest you go to her post and listen for yourself. And I pray it moves you.
I imprinted that verse into memory and when she finished, I ran to grab my Bible.
Not even the gates of hell will be able to keep out... I repeated... not even the gates of hell will be able to keep out.
I wrote the verse down on a piece of paper three times. Then paused to help the husband in the kitchen then asked him to sit with me. I shared what I had heard then shared the verse. Then poured out my heart to him...
I don't know why I've been so scared. I believe that the Bible is clear that the Power of God is greater than any evil force. I believe that we are given access through that Power in Jesus' Name with the Holy Spirit. I just don't live it.
Instead, I've retreated to defense mode. Allowing evil to be on the attack in my life. I've been in desire to live uncomfortably for Christ yet so afraid of evil that I don't live on the offense. And this unsettled me to my core.
I repeated again to Jon, "not even the gates of hell will be able to keep out." What this means, that in Matthew 16:18 is that Christ describes the Church he will build to be on the offense in the battle against evil.
So why am I so afraid? Why am I hiding in the confines of the safety of the American Church's way and praying that the evil that exists around the world just doesn't come close to home?
Maybe, just maybe, I have more fear against evil than I do faith in the Power of Christ.
So Jon and I prayed. We made the commitment to grow together as a couple and a family that lives in the offense. That lives to see everyone, not as a need, but as ones whose names are called by God. This means our lives will have to drastically change. Our choices will have to look drastically different. And there is a slight excitement, that through her sharing her story of her "little Angel", God used Kimberly Smith, to wake us from our slumber of fear and onto HIS team actively fighting against evil in this world.