Loving God with all our heart, loving our neighbors as ourselves, resisting the Devil, and building up the Body of Christ require strength — specifically strength of mind and heart. When God commands us to be strong for these tasks, he also promises to supply us with strength, with the power to engage in the activities of life he sets before us, especially when we don’t think we’ll be up to the task. Considering the following promises over the next few weeks will help us fine tune our faith for those times when we feel feeble and weak.
Be strong and courageous, do not fear or be dismayed because of the king of Assyria, nor because of all the multitude which is with him; for the one with us is greater than the one with him. With him is only an arm of flesh, but with us is the Eternal, our God, to help us and to fight our battles. 2 Chronicles 32:7–8
God loves it when we are underdogs! He loves it when we are surrounded and our enemies seem to have the upper hand. He loves it when we are moved to cry, “We are powerless before this great multitude who are coming against us; nor do we know what to do, but our eyes are on you.” He loves it when we remember “a horse is a false hope for victory; nor does it deliver anyone by its great strength.” For God watches to see who will call on him. God loves those who appeal to “the throne of grace for mercy, and for grace to help in time of need.” Because God is with us in this way, we can be strong. We can move out into the battle without fear of annihilation. Like David, we can go to the stream and pick up our five stones. Like Joshua, we can march around the walls of Jericho. Like Jesus, we can take up our crosses daily, and confidently follow him into a hostile and needy world.
Gracious God, Creator of the whole earth, I take courage in your strength. The One who is in me is greater than he who is in the world, so I join the battle again today in his name.
Amen! This is one of my favorite themes of scripture.
Needed this today, Doug! Ted