Over the MLK holiday weekend, millions of us helped break the box office records by pouring into theaters to see “American Sniper”. It was an amazing movie! It was brutal. It was hard to watch at times. But more than that, it was inspiring.
For Chris Kyle, standing firm for what he believed in meant giving up the comforts of home and family to fight for our freedom. He believed in God, Country & Family…in that order. Chris could have stayed home with his beautiful wife, Taya, and their two young children, but he did what he believed he had to do.
The decisions Chris made both at home and at war were difficult and often painful, but his commitment to his beliefs never wavered. Ever.
At the end of the movie, you could have heard a pin drop. I’m wondering if everyone in the theater felt like I did. Humbled by his sacrifice and bravery. And maybe a little ashamed of the unwillingness to stand firm for what we claim to believe in.
I was eager to write about this movie but after sitting far too long and staring at a blank screen, I realized this post would be different. I’ve started over again and again. I even thought about hitting the delete button altogether. The words just aren’t flowing like they usually do.
It’s a hard topic.
It reminded me of the story in the book of Mark when a young boy’s father asked Jesus if he could heal his son. Jesus was a bit taken aback – because of course He could. He was Jesus.
Immediately the boy’s father exclaimed, “I do believe; help me overcome my unbelief!” ~Mark 9:24
Dr. R.C. Sproul has often said that the hard part of faith is not believing in God; rather, what is difficult is believing God.
So is that my struggle? I firmly and wholeheartedly believe in God. But what would I do if my faith were truly put to the test?
Would I stand firm?
It’s a haunting question.
Someday my faith will no doubt be put to the test. It might be a bad diagnosis, a financial crisis or the senseless loss of a loved one. Whatever the case, I know myself well enough to know my first response will be to question God.
How and why would He let this happen to me? To them? I know I’ll be royally pissed off at Him! Stand firm? You bet I’ll stand firm! Mad as a hornet and shaking my fist at Him!
After I hurl all the ugly “why me?” questions at Him, I know I’ll calm down enough to remember that I am His daughter and He is my awesome and loving God. Then I’ll take Him up on all those promises about never leaving me and keeping me hemmed in close to Him. And when I need His help with my unbelief, His right hand will hold me fast.
Even at my worst (and that’s pretty bad!), He promises that nothing I could ever do or say will separate me from His love.
I believe in You, Father. Thank you for standing firm in your love for me. And thank you for helping me overcome my unbelief.
You are my hero.