Monday, December 1, 2014

Stand

My biggest complaint about my current physical state is the difficulty I have with standing. I can walk pretty well, though not far; but standing is painful and difficult. There are lots of times I miss this ability, especially in church when everyone rises to sing together, and during social occasions when people are milling around, standing in small groups chatting. It’s not a big deal though. I can sit in the front row at church and see the screen, and if I find a chair at those social events, someone will usually come and join me.

Having to sit when others are standing used to make me feel sad and left out. But, by God’s grace, I usually don’t experience that any more. Now, when others are standing and I must sit, I use it as a reminder to think about another kind of standing for which I have been divinely enabled:  I stand in grace, through faith in Christ:

“For our citizenship is in heaven, from which we also eagerly wait for the Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ, who will transform our lowly body that it may be conformed to His glorious body, according to the working by which He is able even to subdue all things to Himself. Therefore, my beloved and longed-for brethren, my joy and crown, so stand fast in the Lord, beloved.”  --Phil 3:20-4:1

I really love this passage of Scripture, because it speaks so clearly to my heart. It even includes the truth that this lowly, broken body will one day be conformed to His glorious body, just as my sinful heart will one day be conformed to His perfection. This reminder that He is able to subdue all things to Himself brings me great comfort. I know that nothing can come to me that has not been ordained and deemed perfect for me by my loving heavenly Father. Whatever pain or disability may be in my future, God already has a plan for how he will sustain me so that I can stand, never wavering in my faith:

Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord and in the power of His might. Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil. For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this age, against spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places. Therefore take up the whole armor of God, that you may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand. 
--Eph 6:10-12

My Father has fully equipped me for this battle against my own fleshly desires to have what others have, and to decide how my own body should function. When I have put on the full armor of God, I will be able to stand, not only against my flesh, but against the most powerful spiritual forces that exist! Nothing can steal my joy when I remember my helmet of salvation. No lie can convince me that God is not good when I apply the sword of the Spirit, the Word of God. My resolve is sometimes weak, but even if my enemy’s arrow pierces through that shield of faith, my breastplate of righteousness is there to keep it from getting to my heart.

Yes, dear friends, there is a far more important kind of standing than physically being on our feet. We can stand in the grace of God, through faith in Christ, safe from the fiery darts of the enemy, the world, and our own flesh. We can do this because…

…we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom also we have access by faith into this grace in which we stand, and rejoice in hope of the glory of God.--Romans 5:1-2

Hallelujah! What a Hope! What a Savior!