Willing to Risk: Would You Try to Raise Someone from the Dead?


With all the natural disasters taking place all over the world, it’s difficult to escape the imagery of devastation. It has led to some interesting discussions with my aptly named four-year-old daughter, Faith.

After seeing some of the devastation in Joplin, MO, and hearing that over a hundred people died, my daughter said, “Let’s ask God to bring them back to life!”

Nervous laughter. Quick, change the subject. More stalling.

“That’s what Jesus did, right, Daddy?”


It made me think about just how faithless our “faith” can become if we don’t exercise it. Like sleeping on top of your arm, eventually the lowered circulation becomes normal. The feeling just about goes away – unless we jolt it. And that’s what we must do to our faith.

By jolt, I don’t mean asking God for some huge thing you want, like a better-paying job or a new car. I mean a real jolt of a prayer: “God, I surrender to You today. Stretch my faith and give me the courage to follow Your leading.” Simple. Scary. Insane?

That’s how I often feel when I take a risk by doing something I feel God prodding me to do.

One morning, I was sitting at my office desk writing a story when God spoke clearly to me: “Write this verse down on a card and give it to her.” It wasn’t audible, but it was an idea that emerged from my brain that I initiated in no way. It seemed harmless enough, even though I never knew if I might get made fun of for such acts by office clowns.

But I did it any way.

Three hours later, the woman stormed out of the office.

I wondered if I had offended her in some way. I was so concerned that I inquired of my editor what was going on. Family emergency. The card was gone.

Three days later, I saw the woman at the funeral of her son, who was less than a year old. She was wailing. It was deep sorrow, the unimaginable loss that I pray I never have to experience. I became uncomfortable with the open display of raw emotions. How could God be so heartless? I wondered.

At the burial site, the woman was calmer but still visibly shaken by the traumatic events. She came up to me, fished the card I gave her out of her purse, and showed it to me.

“This Bible verse is what I’ve been clinging to for the past three days. Thank you.”

I gave her a hug and told her I would be praying for her.

As she walked over to watch her son’s casket be lowered into the ground, I realized that God wasn’t heartless. In fact, He loved that woman so much that He gave her hope in the midst of a hopeless situation—and He used me to do it by writing down a simple verse on a card.

Fear not, for I am with you. Do not be dismayed. I am your God. I will strengthen you; I will help you; I will uphold you with My victorious right hand. – Isaiah 41:10

Atrophied faith isn’t really faith at all—it’s a loss of conviction. If we really believe God’s Word, then we will have the courage to do what He asks us to do. In a world that’s leaking hope, Christians have a chance to restore it by having hearts attuned to God’s voice and being willing to take a risk.

Maybe God is speaking to you about doing something for someone or saying something to somebody. Maybe it is Him—or maybe it’s the loaded baked potato you had the night before. But ultimately when we choose to respond to God’s leading in our lives, the results aren’t up to us—it’s in His hands. We must choose to obey. He must provide the hope. We must choose to pray. He must do the miraculous.

Who knows? Maybe I will ask God to raise someone from the dead one day.

SHARE: What risks have you taken for God lately? How has it built your faith?

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