Stand up, stand up for Jesus,
Ye soldiers of the cross;
Watch, stand fast in the faith, be brave, be strong. (I cor. 16:13)
To stand fast is to be firm on the feet, erect, supported by the roots. Like a tree, the Christian is to remain firm, brave and strong when encountering cloudy days, torrid rains, blustery storms, frigid cold, and scorching heat. When a tree’s roots extend deep underground in search of water and nutrients, its leaf greens up and it yields its fruit in its season (Ps. 1:3). So, too, must the Christian extend his heart and soul—his roots—in search of the life-giving water Jesus provides. The refreshment that Jesus gives will become a spring of water welling up within him (Jn. 4:14). Like a tree, the believer will yield his fruit when his faith and hope are placed in the Lord.
How do we place our hope in the Lord? By standing fast in the faith. A visit to most any of the 150 Psalms offers insight. Consider Psalm 56 for example. David is in the midst of a storm in his life. Surrounded by his enemies, he prays to God, firm in his faith, boldly expressing his trust in the Lord with phrases such as – “When I am afraid I will trust in you” -” I will praise God’s Word and put my trust in Him” – “When I cry unto God then will my enemies turn back: This I know for God is for me” – “In God will I praise His Word, in the Lord will I praise His Word” – “In God have I put my trust. I will render praises unto You, You have delivered my soul from death and will deliver my feet from falling that I may walk before You.” David knew where his hope lay. Today we may not be facing an enemy with sword and shield as David did, but it is likely that we are up against another kind of enemy seeking to kill, steal, and destroy us in some way. Let us follow David’s example: Stand firm, trust God.
What storm do you see on the horizon this day? Would you be willing to take up the challenge to grow in your faith, trust God, and praise Him? When you encounter the storm that is undoubtedly coming your way, remember to stand firm, let your roots stretch out in the depths of your heart and soul as you seek to find the life-giving water that Jesus wants to well up within you. Remember to “Stand up, stand up for Jesus, Ye soldiers of the cross.”