In the last few weeks, I’ve had some interesting challenges, most of which have been around taking a stand for some convictions that run deep in my soul. Taking a stand can be kind of tricky – there’s a Japanese proverb that says, “the nail that stands up gets hammered down.” Nevertheless, I think it’s important to take a stand and not just blend into the average, mediocre and mundane. Here are a few things to consider:
be mindful of what you take a stand for: sometimes I think we spend all of our time, energy, voice & equity on things that don’t really matter; keep in mind eternity and the big picture when you stand up for something
be mindful of how you take a stand: diplomacy and tact are helpful ingredients for taking a stand about one’s convictions; be friendly and firm 🙂
Thinking about these things, consider a few videos & lyrics that could be worthy of some reflection:
I had an interesting experience in a conversation with a friend a few days ago as we were talking about various challenges in our lives. In the discussion, I opened up and shared some frustrations & struggles that have been on my heart, which may seem fairly harmless. After the conversation as I was walking to my car, I felt a bit of a gentle scolding in my heart from God. Some of His loving rebuke challenged me that sometimes I can be whiney: complaining about what isn’t going well, “venting” with my frustrations, etc. Even worse, I can get into a pity party & swallow the lie that I’m a loser. I think we can all fall into this trap from time to time.
I’m extremely confident that God was confronting & challenging me to change in His loving rebuke because the next morning, my Bible reading time just happened to be in Josh 1, where God commands Joshua 3 times to be strong & courageous. Furthermore, I also read Ps 103:1-5 where David beautifully magnifies the work of God in our individual lives.
So here are my take-aways (and perhaps they will encourage you as well):
just because the evil one serves me a plate of discouragement doesn’t mean that I automatically pick up a fork & start ingesting his poisonous delicacies masquerading as a chummy conversation;
be strong & courageous: may my ears & eyes be sensitive to hear & see God moving in my life (vertical focus) more than how I feel or what I see & hear on the horizontal plane;
Be strong & courageous is a command from God & it obliterates my self-pity dribble
Perhaps on this Resurrection Weekend it would be constructive to celebrate the death of the “loser lie”. Indeed, when they crucified Jesus, many thought He was one of the world’s biggest losers, but He came back & annhilated the “loser lie.” So my friend, let me invite you to join me in receiving His lluminating imperative to be strong & courageous to evaporate any discouragement, deceptions & lies in our lives 🙂