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  • Writer's picturekimstanfield

Safety Net

Safety net - a net placed to catch an acrobat or similar performer in case of a fall / a safeguard against possible hardship or adversity.

I recently took my two younger grandchildren to a beach up north of our city and there was a playground with a lot of ‘safety nets’ built-in for their protection – a very good thing!

I believe that an acrobat when practicing will go hard in their pursuit of the amazing and extraordinary feat because if it does not work, they have the net to catch them if it fails but on the night of their performance for others, they will only do what’s comfortable (still a stunning feat) as they don’t have the net in place!

But for us as Christians, do we settle for ‘comfortable’ knowing we have Jesus Christ in our life?

“God, …—he rescues you from hidden traps, shields you from deadly hazards. His huge, outstretched arms protect you— under them, you’re perfectly safe; his arms fend off all harm. … He ordered his angels to guard you wherever you go. If you stumble, they’ll catch you; their job is to keep you from falling. You’ll walk unharmed among lions and snakes, and kick young lions and serpents from the path. – Psalm 91:1-13 MSG

The early disciples were sent out and had to deal with some very real and daunting tasks – how would we fair today with the same challenges?

‘There’s more to come: We continue to shout our praise even when we’re hemmed in with troubles, because we know how troubles can develop passionate patience in us, and how that patience, in turn, forges the tempered steel of virtue, keeping us alert for whatever God will do next.’ – Romans 5:3-5 MSG

I am honoured that I have Jesus Christ in my life, and he is always there for me but it does not stop me from still experiencing the pain and hardship of what the enemy will un-mercilessly throw at me. I do believe though that through those challenges I can come out better equipped to stand taller the next time I am bombarded by something similar.

I don’t wish to see my ‘safety net’ of Jesus Christ as a reason not to push hard for evangelising the nations, revitalising the church, and doing all I can to bring God’s love to see my community and sphere of influence transformed in this season. If anything, I want to push the comfortable boundaries and see how far I can swing from the rafters in order to have a reach that will go far beyond what I could ever dream!

‘God can do anything, you know—far more than you could ever imagine or guess or request in your wildest dreams!’ – Ephesians 3:20-21 MSG

As I am currently unable to travel internationally these days, I was musing over my last four decades of travel, starting with a mission field in the south pacific with my older sister in the early ’80s to enjoying Christmas Markets in Europe with my grown daughters in 2019 plus all the in-between! When I was much younger, I never imagined that I would even get to see as much of my own Nation, let alone so much of the rest of the world. It has been exhilarating but mostly because I chose to allow God to lead the process 😊

In August 2007, I was reading a book called “Completely His” by Shannon

Ethridge. Her dedication to praying over her and her husband’s passports to be

available and used for the Father’s business was inspiring. At that time, my

husband and I had passports sitting in a top draw (for seven years) for a family

trip to the UK that had never happened. I thought what a waste of money to

spend having them and do nothing with them so from that day on I took out

both mine and my husbands to start to lay hands on them every day for them

both to be used for God’s purposes for whatever life they had left in them. I did

not want them to be a waste but used for His glory.

In December of 2007, I was on the door one Sunday morning, shaking people’s

hands when, a lady that was praying for my husband and I came to me very

excitedly to say that she had a vision that morning of me standing up in front of

women, preaching! Of course, I just said “good morning, thanks for that, enjoy

the service” I was a little sceptical and thought that is one I am going to put on

the shelf for the time being.

Early in the New Year, some months on, I was experiencing some difficult

circumstances and had the desperate sensation of just wanting to run away – any

way possible. I happened to be speaking with our mission director. I jokingly said

to him, “do you have anywhere I can run away to?” He came back to me and said

there is a woman at church who would like to take a team to Sri Lanka to

minister to groups of women and would I be interested. Straight away, I said, “no,

thank you, I was not asking for that type of running away too.” Over the next few

months, several situations arose (and it would take another whole book to

recount – but I shall share just one below) but God was orchestrating for me to

make a choice – would I go and do what I had been praying for over my passport

or not?

It was a hard choice to make as the enemy tried so viciously to interfere, but as I

chose to be obedient and went, God was always a step ahead, and walking in that

revelation is a whole new level again. Awesome actually!

Quote from ‘Door of Hope’ by Kim Stanfield

I am secure in Jesus Christ being my ‘safety net’ but I am not going to let that ‘comfortableness’ stop me from stepping out to share the gospel to as many as possible in as many ways as possible because I believe the days are getting shorter for people to make that choice on their eternity!

Seasons of life change and I am feeling that my life is now just turning a corner and round that bend is the pursuit of passionately running after why God placed me here…

‘Who knows? Maybe you were made … for just such a time as this.’ – Esther 4:14 MSG


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