The Only Way to Stand

“Therefore take up the whole armor of God, that you may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand firm.” Ephesians 6:13

There is a trend within children’s sports today to give a trophy to everyone. Claiming that one team or competitor is better than another has become next to taboo because it may damage the precious self-esteem of the little athletes.

What happens when those same children attempt to take their first steps out of mommy’s nest into the real world can be a literal shock to the system! That employers would be so audacious as to have expectations for their workers and hold their employees to a high standard doesn’t fit into an “everybody’s a winner” frame of mind. The thought that students (not teachers and professors) are responsible for the quality of their work and study is a foreign principle that seems flawed. That one person would be deemed superior to others (especially if I am one of the others!) is the worst kind of offense in a society that teaches us that everybody’s a winner no matter what.

No parent ever sets out to harm their children, but a “there-are-no-losers-in-life” mentality does just that. Rather than arming our children for the realities of a world that seldom makes sense, is rarely fair, and is never perfect, we may be inadvertently setting them up for disappointment and failure.

The Lord God offers an altogether different type of armor for the actual realities of the world in which we live. For starters, He offers us the truth! The truth is, we are not all equal in our abilities. Some are musical where others are athletic. Some are book smart while others are street smart. Some are technically inclined while others are artistically inclined. Oh yeah, and by the way, we’re not perfect little angels. Sorry.

Along with the truth, the Lord shields us with His righteousness, covers us with salvation He has earned, and enveloped us in the love of His Gospel. Hopefully this is what your parents have taught you in your formative years. Regardless, hear the message now: you will not stand in your own strength and power against the darkness and dark days this world so liberally lends out. You don’t have it in you, no matter who you are. Yet armored by God Himself, there is nothing against which you can’t stand! So stand firm in the Lord, not in the lies!

“Preserve in wave and tempest
Your storm-tossed little flock;
Assailed by wind and weather,
May it endure each shock.
Stand at the helm, our pilot,
And set the course aright;
Then we will reach the harbor
In Your eternal light.”
Preserve Your Word, O Savior , Lutheran Service Book, 658


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