Head held high

My defensiveness towards others inadvertently rubs off on my relationship with God. If He asks something of me that I believe is unacceptable to others I will not fully receive it in case I feel embarrassed.

“Lift up your heads, you gates; be lifted up, you ancient doors, that the King of glory may come in.” (Ps24)

Many want more of Jesus and ‘lift up their gates’ to let Him in.  As we do so we understand that the king of kings comes both to bring glory and to rule.  We let him in with an attitude of surrender. Yet ‘Lift up your heads’ implies honour. It is the place where I look people in the eye and speak with confidence and a clear conscience. It is not enough to know in my inner world that I have honour. To stand before God and people with head high I need to be willing to trust God with my outer world.

It has taken years for the Lord to lift my head. I have always walked head down, secure in my inner world, insecure in the outer one. The King encourages me to lift my head secure in His honour. He has been proving that confidence by leading me into situations where I may be misunderstood. As I face them with Him by faith and with openness, I learn that Jesus is faithful and can be trusted with my reputation. So, I lift my head and receive more of what He has for me.

Jesus’ Battle

We live in a time when our enemy, unbelief is hardened and aggressively attacking faith. The Lord’s response –

“But for those who fear you, you have raised a banner to be unfurled against the bow.” (Psalm 60)

A banner does not stop arrows – that is for the shield of faith. The banner reminds us why we stand.  It is not about us, it is about Jesus. The banner reminds us He is worth it and that He withstood arrows.  In in His day unbelief came from the religious community, a different source but still deadly.  Psalm 60 continues

 “Who will bring me to the fortified city … is it not you, O God,  you who … no longer go out with our armies?”

When the army has been standing so long under a barrage it asks: Is God for us? Again, it is not about us, it is about Jesus and He knows the right time. Then comes the crucial element:

“Bring us aid against the enemy for the help of man is worthless.”

We think victory is down to our capability in ministry so we neglect God. We forget that He is doing things we cannot see in the lives of those we face. One day God will overcome if we wait for Him. So the psalm ends,

“With God we shall gain the victory, and He will trample down our enemies.”

Unbelief will be trampled and exposed as foolish. In the meantime let us unfurl the banner of Jesus and look in hope for him, for his timing, for His leadership.