DayBreaks for 3/02/16 – Stand

DayBreaks for 3/02/16: Stand

Eph. 6.10-13 (NIV): Finally, be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power.  Put on the full armor of God so that you can take your STAND against the devil’s schemes.  For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms.  Therefore put on the full armor of God, so that when the day of evil comes, you may be able to STAND your ground, and after you have done everything, to STAND.

“When St. Patrick and his brothers were proclaiming Jesus to the pagan kings of Ireland,

My roots began their journey, threading their way into the gritty soil along Pescadero Creek.

My leaves peeked through the decaying litter of the redwood forest

And I began my climb toward the sky.

Oh, I’ve seen my troubles:

Fifteen hundred years of flames roaring up the canyon.

I’ve felt their crimson tongues lick at my bark until deep, bleeding wounds left me in naked agony.

My lower branches are centuries gone, victim to a hundred raging devastations.

And yet I stand.

I once looked up at my elders and wondered if I would ever be so high, and grand, and majestic,

Yet one by one they would totter and fall with a whoosh and a crash.

Beetles and windstorms

Fires and flood,

And yet I stand.

Wounded, yet I stand.

“Beautiful” would not describe me today, though perhaps “persistent”.

Blackened scars bear mute witness to my history,

Deep gorges touch my very soul.

Scar tissue and burls flow down my base like hideous lava to cover my nakedness,

And yet I stand.

“Tallest Tree” says the placard at my base,

“Two hundred twenty-five feet” the board declares.

Wrong.

For even at my age I’m still creaking and swaying and stretching, and I’ve grown some feet since then.

Huckleberries and tanbark oaks flourish far below,

The great-grandchildren of my great-great grandchildren tickle my knees with their greenery,

And yet I stand.

Jays and jackrabbits,

Foxes and field mice dart about in my shade, because I stand.

Stand in spite.

Stand because.

Stand for the forest that needs me.

Stand to proclaim the glory of God.

Stand a score of feet higher than my nephews and nieces.

Stand to see what they cannot in their wooded blindness.

Stand to feel the fog bathe my face.

Stand to drink in the morning sun.

Stand to serve.

Stand.

Stand.

Stand.

“Copyright by Ralph F. Wilson, used by permission, all rights reserved.”

Galen’s thoughts:

This poem makes me cry in shame to remember all the times that I’ve failed to stand during the firestorms of life, when I’ve let the wind of trial or temptation break and defeat me.  We’ve all been wounded in this life, none of us escapes the pain of the human existence.  But, will we stand?  When the enemy rages against me, will I stand tall and strong and feel the Son touch my face?  Will I fall with a crash?  Am I still growing and reaching ever higher and higher toward heaven?  Can those around me find shelter in His presence within me because I stand?  Am I a blessing to those seeking shelter from the pain of this life?

We must stand because the forest of humanity needs the Savior.  They must see Him in us.  We must reach a little higher than ever before so that others can see our example and be encouraged to stand, to grow and to reach towards heaven themselves.

Oh, God, I want to stand for You!  Lift me up, set me upright and make me stand!

TODAY’S PRAYER:  Almighty Father, without you we are nothing.  Without you we fall before every wind that blows.  Thank you that you will not break the bruised reed, but will strengthen us so we can stand – moment by moment, day by day, make us strong in the power of your great might!  May we stand strong for you!  In Jesus’ name, Amen.

Copyright 2016, all rights reserved.

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