by Charles R. Swindoll
In spite of our adversary's subtle and deceitful strategy against Christians, we are certain of this: In the end, God wins. What we need until then is a courage transfusion.
Four commands are found in 1 Corinthians 16:13: "Be on the alert, stand firm in the faith, act like men, be strong." Each one of these commands deserves a bold exclamation point. We'll focus on one each day over the next several days. Today we're discussing number two.
Here's the second command: Stand alone! It is rendered here in 1 Corinthians 16:13, "stand firm in the faith." Eugene Peterson says it this way in The Message: "Hold tight to your convictions." You may have spent years listening to preaching. Some of you have taught in Bible Study Fellowship, in small group studies in your home, or at the place where you work. Many of you are engaged as fine Bible teachers. Stand firm in the truth you are teaching. When necessary, stand alone.
Don't let it bother you that you are different. That's what makes you unique. It gives extra value to your intelligence. That's what puts you in demand. I will tell you from experience, the mentors who have shaped my life have all been uniquely different. None of them fell into the basic category of "dull." None of them bored me with the Bible. Their lives were lived on the edge. Some, admittedly, were a little weird, a little strange. But I loved it that they didn't blend into the background, like the majority. They stayed unique. That's what got my attention. They all lived above the level of mediocrity. Each one was so "different." That's what attracted me to them.
I want to encourage you to be different, to stand alone. That's what makes you great. Don't care how others run their companies; run yours right. Don't care if most of the people walk away from danger; you walk toward it. You do what's right. Don't lie. Don't cheat. Don't steal. Don't hang around with people who do. It takes courage to swim upstream, against the current. Do it!
Excerpted from Why, God? Calming Words for Chaotic Times, Copyright © 2001 by Charles R. Swindoll, Inc. All rights reserved worldwide.
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