Courage in Christ

So why do we sometimes ignore the problem or fail to stand up for someone even when we know what is happening is wrong?

There could be many reasons—but probably one of the most common is the fact that, in our hearts, we are afraid of what other people think of us. And the simple truth is, we want to be liked by the majority of people. If the victim being bullied is perceived as unpopular, then maybe there’s a part of us that’s afraid other people will identify us with that victim, as part of the unpopular crowd.

But again, we can go back to Jesus Christ as our model. What gave him the courage to stand up to the crowd and speak truth—even when it was unpopular?

We get a hint of the answer in John 13, when Jesus washes the feet of his disciples to demonstrate to them how they should love one another.

Right before Jesus does this, the Bible tells us something very important: “Jesus knew that the Father had put all things under His power, and that He had come from God and was returning to God; so he got up from the meal … and began to wash His disciples’ feet.”feet-1149140_960_720

The point is, Jesus had an eternal perspective: He didn’t place His worth in the people around Him and what they thought. He knew the most important thing in His life was the love of His Father, the eternal, personal God. He knew that God had a plan for His life and that He was going to eventually be with God—and that God wanted Him to love those around Him.

We can have that same confidence—and let that truth of God’s love empower us with the same kind of freedom to serve and minister to others. Pray for a daily recognition of who you are in Christ—and of how much God loves you. Once you begin to realize that God’s powerful and all-consuming love outweighs any of the pressures around you, you will find that you have more freedom to stand up for others than you ever have had before.

“Security comes from understanding what it means to be in Christ, and significance comes from understanding that the Christian walk is not me being somebody. It’s not me being famous. It’s not me being great. It’s Jesus being Himself in me,” wrote Darrell Scott, the father of the Rachel Scott (the first student killed in the Columbine shootings) in the book Rachel’s Tears.

“Too many people try to find security and significance in too many places. They look in relationships; they look in popularity. …  But these are all detours and dead ends. Our true security and significance are found only in Christ, and I believe Rachel knew that.”

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