God calls His people to take part in establishing His kingdom on earth, and His presence secures our victory.
Sean White clipped into his snowboard for his second run in the Vancouver Winter Olympics half-pipe. Before he plunged downhill, he perched at the starting line and raised both hands in triumph. He had already won the gold medal. Olympic half-pipers run twice and keep their best score. Sean’s first score topped all the other snowboarders’ first and second runs. He could have scooted down the half-pipe on his belly like an otter and taken the gold medal. This second run was a victory lap.
Every day, God’s people are perched on the same line. God calls His people to take part in establishing His promised kingdom on earth. Before any sermon is preached, before any gift is given, before any disciple is made, or prayer offered, God’s presence secures victory for His Church. The medal is already His.
That does not mean every day will feel like a victory lap. The book of Joshua begins with the Israelites perched on the Jordan River, ready to cross over into the promised land. They faced a long struggle against their enemies. God also gave them the high bar of His law to follow, which they would fail to reach again and again. God still assured them, “Do not be afraid or discouraged, for the LORD your God is with you wherever you go” (Joshua 1:9). The Israelites took those first steps into the promised land on that alone, hoping that God would be with them as He had been with Moses. Again and again, God demonstrated His presence in dramatic miracles. The Jordan parted, the walls of Jericho fell, the sun stood still, and even more was still to come in Christ.
In Romans, Paul talks about the sufferings Christians face. It is not a rosy list. Death, famine, persecution, and violence are only the highlights. Against these things, Paul weighs the love of Christ and asks, “If God is for us, who is against us?” (Romans 8:31). Since God has not even spared His own Son, then nothing can stand against His love. Christ has justified us and unites us with God, and now nothing can separate us from that love.
When you face the day, know that God’s words to you are true. He is with you. When God tells you “I will not leave you or forsake you” (Joshua 1:5), He is telling you the score. The victory is already secure. Nothing you do and nothing that happens will separate you from His love in Christ. His kingdom has already won, even when we can only hope for it. Knowing this gives you the freedom to act, confident of the outcome, like Sean White in the Olympics. Afterall, his second half-pipe score—that “victory lap” run—is still the highest score in the history of the sport.
Written by Dave Chaniott