Strength to Strength
Originally scheduled for November 19
How blessed is the man whose strength is in You, In whose heart
are the highways to Zion! Passing through the valley of Baca they
make it a spring; The early rain also covers it with blessings. They
go from strength to strength, Every one of them appears before God
(Psalms 84:5-7 NASB)
In this short selection
from Psalm 84 we see three of the main characteristics of the strong
· The strong
Christian is not strong in the ways of the world, but in the ways of
the Lord. How do you do this? The answer is relatively simple; you
set your sights on heaven, not on earthly success. As CS Lewis once
remarked, if you aim for heaven you get it — and the earth thrown in
· The path of the
strong Christian goes through suffering. The phrase, “valley of
Baca” means the valley of weeping. The secret to handling this is
you turn suffering into blessings. You may not realize this but you
do this frequently. When you go to a party and tell all stories
about you and your family, are they about the good times or the
strong Christian goes from “strength to strength.” It’s as if you
were being prepared for something and are in training. Perhaps the
Almighty is readying you for something. We can see but little of the
way into the future; He sees it all.
The great example
of this is Christ himself. We may look at how he did it.
His sights were set on heaven; “I have come to do your will” he says
of the Father.
of Tears? Consider the night he spent in Gethsemane before the
to Strength? He was made perfect through suffering, as the author of
Hebrews tells us (Hebrews 5:9).
As you partake of
communion today, it should be reminder of his suffering. The bread
should bring to your mind his body on the cross — held there by the
nails in his hands and feet. In the cup you should see his blood,
pouring from his body like great drops of sweat (Luke 22:44).
Strength to Strength? Consider how he went from the crucifixion to
the resurrection, from endurance to triumph. Think on these things,
and partake in a worthy manner.