Theme of the Week: Stronger
Bible Verse: “For as a man is, so is his strength.” Judges 8:21
Scripture Reading: Romans 8:31
Too often we try to make it on our own strength. We hear the call, “mano a mano,” and instantly take a stand to prove our manhood.
But there are other ways to to be strong. It takes inner strength to hold back anger, not to retaliate over an insult, and even greater fortitude to hold your tongue.
The problem is that we’re often caught off guard, unprepared. And here’s the rub. Few of us (yes, I include myself) are willing to admit it. Baseball provides a good analogy.
The matchup of batter vs. pitcher. The batter confidently strides over to the batter’s box, ever mindful of the pitcher’s vast repertoire of pitches. But let’s take a closer look at everything that is going on.
The batter not only has to contend with the pitcher’s arsenal of missiles, but also with the conspiratorial catcher. Then, if he’s lucky enough to hit the baseball, often delivered at frightening speed, he has to contend with seven other players. Suddenly, it’s not just one on one, but one against nine. And I haven’t even mentioned the role of the umpire, who, dressed in black like an overbearing judge, renders his verdict with authority and finality. Yikes!
Our own battles – much like the batter’s – aren’t without complications. Although the batter (each of us) has his own team of players – capable, trained, and waiting on the sidelines – they can’t offer much direct support. All they can do is cheer him on. His strength comes from the playbook (Bible) and the One who wrote it.
It’s good to remember that our God doesn’t count our strike-outs (failures) like an umpire. We’ve been accepted – despite our many faults – because we’ve been redeemed and are now playing for Jesus’ team.
“And if God is for us, who can be against us.” Romans 8:31 NKJV
Prayer: God, it sometimes feels like I am on my own. Help me to remember that you are always with me and that my strength come from you and your Spirit. Give me the courage to live in your strength.
Reflection: Start every day with a simple prayer asking God to help you be prepared for whatever may come your way.
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