Knowing Where You Stand

In the last few years,  I have been in new situations where I wasn’t quite sure where I stood.  Our family moved to Central Asia and joined a new team and then a few months later I started working at a new school.   As you meet and get acquainted with your fellow workers,  you try to be yourself and hopefully the best version of yourself.   You try to figure out where you fit into the mix.  Sometimes you even wonder what the others think about you and whether you are fitting in.  It can be tiring and if you aren’t careful you can get inward focused over analyzing the situation.   The day then comes where you feel a part of the team.  The team knows who you are and you know them.  You all have strengths and weaknesses but you are still a team.  You can be yourself.  You can laugh together and cry together.  You know where you stand and that the team is behind you.   You are free to be yourself and have given others the freedom to be themselves.

This morning as I was reading I John 5 in The Message, I was thinking about knowing where we stand with God.  These words from the John spoke to me.

My purpose in writing is simply this: that you who believe in God’s Son will know beyond a shadow of a doubt that you have eternal life, the reality and not the illusion.  And how bold and free we then become in his presence, freely asking according to His will, sure that he’s listening.  And if we’re confident that he’s listening, we know that what we’ve asked for is as good as ours.
Don’t you love the phrase “beyond a shadow of a doubt”?  We don’t have to wonder.  It is not a maybe.  It is a beyond a shadow of a doubt that we are his for eternity if we have believed.  This is one thing that stands out for Jesus followers.  We know.  It is not works based.  It is grace based.  It is not how I feel today.  It is about God loving us so much he sent Jesus one Christmas as the hope and salvation of the world.   Now we are bold and free to pray his will and know that God will listen.   I John 5 gives the example of praying for fellow brothers or sisters who are struggling with sin in their lives.   If we pray, God will give them help.   So during this Season of Joy, I stand without a shadow of a doubt accepting God’s greatest gift.  As my gift, I pray for those who are struggling not only with sin but doubts and hard places.   I may not know what to say to them but I know how to give them to the Father who loves them more than I do.   I will pray for them as I would want someone to pray for me when they see the sin in my life.  
(picture from
Dear God in Heaven, Thank you for letting us know where we stand in regards to our salvation.  May we remember without a doubt even when the evil one wants us to do otherwise.  May we diligently lift our fellow brothers and sisters up to you so that as a church we will be one.   May your kingdom come this Christmas.  Amen