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There are two things that I think most horrifying – meeting up with a bear or an aggressive dog. In both circumstances, it is not recommended that I run. Oh, I would want to. I would probably do it anyway. My natural survival inclination would compel me to run, run, run!
In the 1999 comic movie, Run-Away Bride, Julia Robert’s character gets to the altar on more than one occasion, but always runs away before the I do’s. Maybe, I’m like that, too, to some degree. Maybe when something seems too overwhelming…too daunting…I just want to run away and hide from it.
Yep, I am so a runaway bride – bride of Christ, that is! Sadly, I’ve got stories and eyewitness accounts.
I remember going through something terribly painful, and my pastor at the time could sense that I was in jeopardy. I distinctly remember him saying, “Gina, don’t run.” Wish I could say that I heeded his caution.
That was seventeen years ago, and I would like to say that I’ve matured since then. Time and testing will tell…
I believe it will come down to preparation. Because of my fear of coming up on a bear or an aggressive dog, which only one scenario is likely to ever happen, I have researched what to do, so I will know.
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Let me share this scripture:
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.
There are days, and this is one of them, when I feel like I have done everything I can do in a certain situation, and still there is no progress like I expected. I’m suited up in the armor of God and done all I know to do, but nothing. Maybe I’ve even lost some ground. This scripture then says to people like me that I must “stand.” So, in an effort to encourage myself, I’m coming up with a Stand Strategy in three points:
- Stand as opposed to running. I cannot, must not run in a direction contrary to God’s. I cannot get mad at God and drop out. I cannot get depressed and give up. This applies to His church, His ways and His Word.
- Stand on the promises of God. I’m going to prayerfully choose some scriptures to help me in my current circumstance, and stand on them.
- Stand on what God has already told me. I believe I’ve seen a vision of what my future looks like and I am going to remind myself of those things. I am going to review specific insights from my prayer journal, and encourage myself.
Do you have a Stand plan? If not, I am happy to share mine with you.
Gina Duke is the award-winning author of Organizing Your Prayer Closet: A New and Life-Changing Way to Pray (Abingdon Press), that introduces the gift of structured prayer journaling. You can enjoy her weekly #ShePrayerJournals weekend workshops on YouTube, and follower her on Twitter and Instagram at @TheGinaDuke.