Marching On

A four-day work week…isn’t it amazing! For most of us, we love that. There are those who are in professions that require them to work no matter the day of the week or the holiday of the year but I think they would agree to a four-day work week every now and then is lovely.

This week our short week is attributed to Memorial Day. To remember those who have gone before us and particularly those who have fought for our right to enjoy the freedoms we have in America.

Now that I have a soldier in my family, it was particularly thought provoking for me. We had the privilege to attend graduation from basic training. During the ceremony, the emcee referred to the men and women who were graduating as “your soldier”.

And of course, it got me thinking…

Soldiers. Warriors. Mighty men.
They are Loyal. Brave. Disciplined. Sacrificial.

-Loyal to the country they serve.
-Brave in the midst of chaos and confusion.
-Disciplined physically and mentally.
-Sacrificial for the greater good.

Some are trained for specific duties in the field. Some bear a rifle and are out in front. Some are carrying radios to let those in charge know what is going on. Some are hanging back so they can administer medical attention with the first aid kits they are carrying in their backpacks. Some are leaders and the rest are trained to follow.

Those soldiers go marching into battle with immeasurable strength to face the unknown. They carry the weight of all they are guarding and fighting for. All the while, standing at attention ready for their next orders. They are highly trained for combat with known and unknown enemies. And those soldiers committed to the cause.

There were some soldiers out on that field who are soldiers in another army– a heavenly army. My son is one of them and I am too. And Gideon was one, King David was one, and the Apostle Paul and the Disciples were as well. We are all soldiers of the Cross.

Paul and David received their marching orders and then they trained. They used some of the knowledge they had before they were “officially” trained to help those who didn’t “know” anything. Both men wrote down the instructions they were given so we could lead and follow their example of loyalty, bravery, discipline and sacrifice.

Being a soldier of the Cross requires a Christian to be loyal to the Name we bear. “If anyone is ashamed of me and my words in this adulterous and sinful generation, the Son of Man will be ashamed of them when he comes in his Father’s glory with the holy angels.” (Mark 8:38 NIV)

And just as a soldier has to be loyal to his country, he has to be brave to defend it. “Be strong. Take courage. Don’t be intimidated. Don’t give them a second thought because God, your God, is striding ahead of you. He’s right there with you. He won’t let you down; he won’t leave you.” (Deuteronomy 31:6 The Message)

Being brave also means being disciplined–”But in your hearts revere Christ as Lord. Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have. But do this with gentleness and respect, keeping a clear conscience, so that those who speak maliciously against your good behavior in Christ may be ashamed of their slander.” (1 Pet. 3:15-16 NIV)

We may also have to sacrifice for the greater good–
“In your relationships with one another, have the same mindset as Christ Jesus:
Who, being in very nature God,did not consider equality with God something to be used to his own advantage;rather, he made himself nothing by taking the very nature of a servant, being made in human likeness. And being found in appearance as a man, He humbled himself by becoming obedient to death—even death on a cross!” (Phil. 2:5-8 NIV)

As soldiers of a heavenly army, we are not fighting against flesh and blood but against principalities and unseen forces not of the earthly world. And as we are called to be loyal, brave, disciplined and sacrificial may we remember there is hope in an eternal reward.

“Onward, Christian soldiers, marching as to war,
With the cross of Jesus going on before.” (John Newton)

Published by Kim Blain

I am an ordinary woman, living an ordinary life, raised an ordinary family with the help of an ordinary husband and an extraordinary God. My desire is to fulfill God’s purpose for my life. I have always had the desire to learn from God’s Word and apply it my life. I speak with integrity, honesty and grace splashed with a little humor. I am down to earth, easy to understand and relatable. I aspire to encourage the Body of Christ to cultivate a heart of hope in our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. The beautiful state of Montana has been my home for most of my life and I enjoy small town living. I live in a wonderful community and I am thankful we were able to raise our three children there. Besides writing and speaking, I enjoy watercolor painting and using my creative talents to bless others through art. My greatest blessings include my husband of over 30 years and my children. Things I love: pink, raspberries and cream, and going for a drive in the countryside. Things I don’t love: orange, liver and onions, and rush hour.

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