Stand Strong

Alistair Brownlee helps brother Jonny over the line after collapsing in triathlon

Eph 6:10-11
Finally, be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power. Put on the full armor of God, so that you can take your stand against the devil’s schemes. 

I find myself regularly trying to stand in my own strength, in the power of my own abilities. I take the lessons learnt over the years and skills I have developed to create programs, strategies, structures & systems, and apply them into the current situation. And some success can be found in those things because they can be based on principles that God set up.

Ephesians brings us back to the reality that should be worked out in our lives as Christian leaders, that we are in need of a Lord and a Saviour. Not a saviour like Superman that swoops in, rescues us from the situation and leaves, but a saviour that steps into the world with us. Who experienced and felt the same things we have, the joys and struggles, the love and the despair, who sees us at our lowest and highest, and who reaches out a hand to us. Who imparts strength to us that we might stand, but not just stand but to stand in strength.

And not a Lord who dictates and determines paths without care for those he leads, but a Lord who puts purpose in our hearts and then gives us the resources to fulfill that purpose. A Lord who is committed to our ultimate good and to his kingdom coming in our life and world.

There is strength available for you to stand, and to stand strong.

In Maori there is a phrase "Kia Kaha", which means stand strong, keep going and when you say it to someone it has a sense that we are with you. I understand the sentiment and solidarity expressed, but kia kaha is not sufficient for fulling God's purposes, it needs to be kia kaha i roto i te Ariki (be strong in the Lord).

Isn't it amazing to think that we serve a God that doesn't load us with burdens that we can't carry. Any task, purpose, expectation that he might have for us comes with the promise of the resources to fulfill it.

Whatever need you have, whatever situation you are facing, you can stand in his strength. Whether the outcome is one we hoped for or one we wanted to avoid, we can stand in his strength. Whether we are facing the challenges that come with growth or we feel like we are floundering and unfruitful, we can stand in his strength.

I am praying for you, that you would stand strong today, in the power and strength of the Lord.