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Where No One Else Stands-June 3, 2024

So where are you standing right now...physically and on certain issues?

Monday Morning Devotion-June 3, 2024

Where No One Else Stands

Therefore I, a prisoner for serving the Lord, beg you to lead a life worthy of your calling, for you have been called by God.  Always be humble and gentle.      Ephesians  4:1-2

*from July 2016

          You have been called!  Called to what?---you may be wondering.  Exactly what your calling is may be apparent to you and to others or maybe not.  Perhaps, it takes some more prayer, Bible study, and meditation to get it figured out.  May take some interaction with others.  Getting out of a comfort zone to come to grips with exactly where you are and where you are headed.

            One thing that I can say without fear of contradiction is that you are called to stand where no one else stands.  No one else can stand in your shoes, walk your path for you, take your place in your life. 

            Even though you are standing in your own personal space, is that where God is calling you to stand?  Even if it is, what is He asking you to do where you stand?  I think that sometimes we are doing what He calls us to do and sometimes not so much!

            Think about it this way:  You stand where no one else stands in the lives of those around you.  That's pretty important.  What you do in that place can have far-reaching implications or a short term effect.  Maybe it will have little or no impact until the place where you stand is elsewhere.

            The Lord has put us in a place that is our own, but those around us and in our lives in other ways will look up to us if we are available.  Is the place where you are standing accessible to those you come in contact with?  Or is the door locked?  Yellow police tape around it?   A "Do Not Disturb" sign on the door?

            If we make it a point to engage in conversation with others as often as we can we are moving the place where we stand forward in a positive way.  I will confess that I am not always the greatest at doing this.  But, I am learning from my granddaughters.  You know the saying in the Bible, "a little child shall lead them?"

            When granddaughter Quinn was younger,  I would  see an example of that.  I don't care if the person or people who were near where she stood were friends, family or someone she had never seen before, Quinn would strike up a conversation.  Keep in mind this was when she was only six years old.

            Quinn asked a lot of questions.  Obviously a lot of these conversations were centered around something Quinn would have like to have happen.  She initiated them in a way that made the other person feel good about being singled out for attention.

            The apostle Paul was writing from prison when he encouraged us to "lead a life worthy of your calling, for you have been called by God.  Always be humble and gentle." 

            The Life Application Bible says:  "God has chosen us to be Christ's representatives on earth.  In light of this truth, Paul challenges us to live lives worthy of the calling we have received---the awesome privilege of being called Christ's very own.  This includes being humble, gentle, patient, understanding and peaceful.  People are watching your life.  Can they see Christ in you?  How well are you doing as His representative?"

            Simply showing that you care is one of the best ways to represent your beliefs.  Tony Dungy uses a barbershop story from his youth as an example of someone who found a way to reach out right where he was standing every day.  It was his barber:

            "When I was growing up I was mesmerized by the talk that went on inside our local barbershop, and I especially enjoyed listening to my barber, Mr. Hampton.  He was another of those people in my life who probably didn't realize the platform he had but used it to impact many people anyway.  I often got my hair cut on Fridays before football games and Mr. Hampton would always wish me well."

            "But he did much more than that.  He talked with me about sports, classes, girls, and anything else that was going on in my life.  He would encourage me, offer advice and show that he cared.  In some ways, it was like the stereotypical barbershop you see in movies, with practical wisdom flying around as freely as the freshly cut hair.  But it was real and honest, and it made a difference to guys like me.  Whether he was aware of it or not, Mr. Hampton had an audience with men, especially young ones, and used it to influence and impact our lives.  Many of us would come in thinking we were getting a haircut, but we left with so much more."

            By the way, if you are looking for a daily devotion book for every day of the year I would recommend Tony Dungy's book that you have often read quotes from on this web site.  "It is called:  "Uncommon Life:  The One Year Daily Challenge.''  Many, but not all of his devotions, have a sports orientation but they all focus on our walk with the Lord.

            While on the subject I also want to thank each of you loyal readers of these devotions on the internet.  Many of you have been with me for a lot of years.  In 2024 we began our 19th year of these devotions and I give thanks to the Lord for each person who has read even one of these and especially for those of you who read them each week.

            I have always been a firm believer that everything happens for a reason.  Coincidence is not something I give credence to.  Where you stand is where you are for a reason.  I think it is well for each of us to consider that from time to time.

            Ask the Lord why?  He has a higher purpose than we do for our lives.  I don't believe it involves going around stern-faced, living a boring life absent of fun and frivolity.  Using the place where we are standing to involve others, even if it is only a Quinn-like simple conversation or a few questions, can make that place a happy place.

Prayer: Lord help us to make the place where we are standing a happy place that resonates our love for you.  Amen!



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