Lion in the sun at the Sedgwick County Zoo, Wichita, KS

Living an undefeated life by standing still

Sometimes I look at the responsibilities I have and feel like I’m the wrong person for the job. Anyone else ever get that way? There is just so much to do and it’s all so much more than I can handle. I feel like there’s no way I’ll ever get it done.

If you feel like that, don’t worry. Everyone gets there, I think. And if you aren’t there yet, someday you will be, especially if you want your life to honor God. If you want to live a life that God can use in a big way, He’s going to drop you in some situations that are out of your depth.

You’re going to feel like the least qualified person in the world. You’re going to fear making mistakes that will damage your future and the future of the people around you. You’re going to want to play it safe, and I’m telling you right now: Don’t.

Lion in the sun at the Sedgwick County Zoo, Wichita, KS

Lion in the sun at the Sedgwick County Zoo, Wichita, KS

Today’s verses are Exodus 14:13-14.

But Moses told the people, “Don’t be afraid. Just stand still and watch the Lord rescue you today. The Egyptians you see today will never be seen again. The Lord himself will fight for you. Just stay calm.”

Just recently I posted on verse 15 from this same chapter, where God tells Moses to get off his hiney and do something (that’s my own personal translation, in case you were wondering). So many movies have tried to capture this moment in biblical history–where the Children of Israel were trapped against the banks of the Red Sea with Pharaoh’s army bearing down on them.

I don’t blame them for freaking out, honestly. I probably would have too if I had been in their shoes–er, sandals.

I mean, think about it. These people hadn’t met God. God, to them, was a fairytale their parents and grandparents and great grandparents whispered about. No one in their generation had see Him work. And then all of a sudden this wild man comes from the desert demanding in the name of I AM that Pharaoh let them go. Then plagues. Then death. Then freedom.

They didn’t know what to do with freedom. They’d never had it before. How terrifying must that have been? And then how frightening to see freedom within their reach only to have it snatched back at the first sighting of Pharaoh’s charging army?

I don’t blame them for despairing. It was too much for them to handle. They didn’t understand it. They didn’t know what to do with it. It was so much easier just to give up.

How many times have we been there? When it seems so much easier to just stop trying than it Is to keep pushing forward? When you aren’t even sure where you’re going, it’s hard to keep putting one foot in front of the other. When every challenge that rises up to greet you in the morning is more than you can manage, it’s just another reason to roll over and pull the covers over your head again instead of getting up.

But hang on. Yeah, that’s what it feels like, but we shouldn’t rely solely on our emotions. Emotions change. Emotions are broken. Emotion needs to be tempered with truth, and there’s a really important truth we all need to remember on those days when the realities of life are weighing us down. It’s the same truth the Children of Israel needed to hear when they were facing death at the hands of Pharaoh’s army.

It’s not your fight.

Did you get that? This isn’t your fight. If you are a follower of Christ, your life isn’t your own, so why would this fight be yours too? Yeah, you’ve got to show up. Yeah, you’ve got to keep standing. Yeah, you need to be strong, but when it comes down to taking the hits, you aren’t the one who has to stand in the ring.

God Himself fought for the Children of Israel, and they didn’t have to do anything. They just had to stand still and be calm and watch. And, Christians, that’s where we are today too.

Are you fighting to get through the day? It’s exhausting. And not many of us have the strength to do it day after day after day. I don’t.

So stop. It’s not your fight anyway.

If you’re living the way God has called you to live, following Christ, trusting His Word, God has put you right where He wants you, even if it doesn’t always feel that way. You don’t have to do the fighting. God will take care of that. Your job is to show up and be calm and watch.

That’s it. You don’t have to be a super human. You don’t have to know every answer. You don’t have to be everywhere at once. Just love people the way Jesus loves them and trust God to do the rest.

Stand still. God Himself will fight for you, and He is undefeated.