Editor's note: This is the fourth installment in a series of articles about Christians who rescue cultures. The first installment was The Servant; the second, The Courageous Coach; the third, Saving Our Kids. We hope that through this series you will be persuaded of God’s call for you to rescue the cultures you are in, that you will get ideas from the examples of others and that you will be encouraged to take action in rescuing the cultures around you.  

Christians who rescue cultures take risks. Just think of John Wooden, the legendary college basketball coach we wrote about earlier in this series. Wooden stood up against prejudice at a time when it was the norm.  As head coach of the Indiana State Teachers College men’s basketball team, Wooden refused a post-season tournament bid in 1947 because the tournament wouldn't allow young men of color to participate and Coach Wooden’s team included an African-American player named Clarence Walker.  Wooden’s refusal to participate in the tournament occurred 20 years before the Civil Rights Act was passed in America.  His actions in 1947 and again in 1948 helped open up post-season college basketball to all young men of color in 1949.  You can bet Wooden faced considerable opposition and ridicule.  This had to be anxiety producing and stressful.  Some people probably shunned Wooden for it.  His wife Nell likely felt pressure, too.  What gave John and Nell Wooden the strength to persevere?   We know the Woodens were Christians.  While we don't specifically know how they coped, it’s likely that they turned to the Bible for strength, courage, wisdom and guidance.

Following are three ways the Lord provides help to Christians who rescue cultures and take risks for the Kingdom:    

Be Prepared to Expect Adversity. The Bible prepares Christians to expect adversity so they’re not surprised. Paul reminds us inEphesians 6:12 that “we are not fighting against flesh-and-blood enemies, but against evil rulers and authorities of the unseen world, against mighty powers in this dark world, and against evil spirits in the heavenly places.” 

Stay Connected with God. Christians who rescue cultures stay connected with God.  He’s a lifeline to them. The Bible gives us an up close view of this.  Read through the Psalms written by David and you will see that he consistently shared his pain and struggles with the Lord as he cried out to Him for strength, courage, wisdom and guidance.  In Psalms 5:1-3 David prayed:  “Oh Lord, hear me as I pray; pay attention to my groaning.  Listen to my cry for help, my King and my God, for I pray to no one but you.  Listen to my voice in the morning, Lord.  Each morning I bring my requests to you and wait expectantly.” Later in the same prayer, David praised the Lord and continued his plea for guidance: “Because of your unfailing love, I can enter your house; I will worship at your temple with deepest awe.  Lead me in the right path, O Lord or my enemies will conquer me. Make your way plain for me to follow.”