One late afternoon in the fall of 1994, I was on a long walk with my grandfather on his west Texas farm. He was asking about my calling in to ministry and what my plans were. After a few minutes he stopped and put his hand on an old barbed wire fence post and said, “You’re going to be a lot like a bottle on a fence post. There are always going to be those that come along and want to throw rocks to try and knock you down. Don’t let’em. Keep standing.”
I’ve always remembered those words when I’ve felt the whizz of rocks flying by in life. I’ve gotta be honest. There have been plenty of times when I’ve wanted to run and hide, put my head in the sand, and just keep my mouth shut.
Since then I’ve often felt like I’m in a “Whack-A-Mole” carnival game, whenever I stick my head up, someone lets me have it!
What About You?
Have you known that moment of reaping the ridicule from a stand you’ve taken, from a line you’ve drawn in the sand with your family, in your community, school or workplace?
Jesus sure does. Even as the most humble person that’s ever walked the earth, he was still maligned, misunderstood, and mistreated.
He could have avoided all the emotional and physical suffering if he just would have bowed a knee to the popular vote and kept his mouth shut.
Yet, He didn’t. He knew how valuable his stand was…what it would mean….the ransom of humanity.
You can see it here:
“Therefore, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us also lay aside every weight, and sin which clings so closely, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us,2 looking to Jesus, the founder and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is seated at the right hand of the throne of God.” (Heb. 12:1-2)
He knew that the “joy set before him” was greater than the shame He would endure.
Our God given stand is no less important.
Whoever you are, wherever you are, if God has given you a stand to take, take it. Take it for the gospel, for the poor, for your family, for your community, for your nation, for our world.
Remember, the joy of knowing Christ is greater than any shame or pain you might endure in this life.
Get up on the fence post and stand!