When I first met Peter, I realized there was something special about him. He had a fire in his eyes that burned brighter than others. When he spoke, you could hear commitment and conviction in his voice. His vision had clarity and urgency that stirred passion in the hearts of others. As he spoke about his desire to reach coaches and athletes in his country, I realized his zeal was forged from the trials, tragedies, and tests that he faced over many years.
Peter was imprisoned seven times in his country as a result of sharing his faith. Because he endured beatings and interrogation as a result of doing ministry, his fire burns bright! He has sacrificed greatly for the Gospel of Jesus Christ. He still keeps serving…and smiling! He’s on a mission to reach the coaches and athletes in his country.
As one of our key leaders in Southeast Asia, he has taught me what it means to be all in to fulfill the calling that God has put on our hearts. I am humbled and honored when I am with Peter, because he is a modern day Apostle Paul that radiates Jesus Christ! He motivates me to be a stronger and more courageous spiritual leader.
When I think about our camp theme this year, RISE, I think of Peter. Joshua 1:9 says, “For this is my command – be strong and courageous. Don’t be afraid or discouraged. For the Lord Your God is with you wherever you go.” We are encouraging coaches and athletes around the world to Rise Up Tough, Rise Up Today, Rise Up Together, and Rise Up Tomorrow.
Peter is a walking, talking, living example of Rise Up Tough. He is someone who has taken Joshua 1:9 and burned it on his heart. He is all tough and no fluff. I have learned these three principles from Peter:
The Tough Train – The tough press in and do whatever it takes to keep taking ground for the Kingdom of God. When the going gets tough, the tough don’t quit. The new four letter word is QUIT, because so many people in our generation are giving up. Peter keeps his hand to the plow and doesn’t give up. The tough train; the fluff quit.
The Tough Trust – The tough have a big faith in a big God. When our trust increases, our God increases. Little trust equals little God. Peter has huge trust in his Lord, and as a result, he serves a huge God. Time after time, Peter has witnessed God’s provision and protection without wavering. The tough trust; the fluff doubt.
The Tough Testify – The tough love to share and give a testimony of God’s goodness. They always have a story worth telling. When we pass the test, we get a testimony. Peter testified of God’s faithfulness even though things are tough. The tough testify; the fluff complain
I am a better leader because of Peter. He has taught me to have tough skin but a tender heart. Remember: the tough train, trust, and testify.
Father, give me tough skin and a tender heart. Help me to train and not quit, to trust and not doubt, and testify and not complain. In Jesus’ name, amen.