Friday, January 6, 2012

Retro Reality Check: At War - January 2007

His Majesty’s Service

War. Every day it is on our newscasts and in our papers. Pictures flash in front of us of guns and destruction. The war across the ocean is a subject often debated but made more real every time one of our own is brought home to rest under a draped flag. The person donning a military uniform knows their commitment will be life-altering.

As a Christian, I am a part of an army taking orders from an Almighty God. It is true that our battle is not against flesh and blood but against the powers of Satan. This may mean that we are lead into areas that are out of our comfort zone, and active combat for some does indeed include physical danger. But there is so much of our day-to-day living that is still ‘active service’.

There are those that consider service to our Ultimate Commander to be up to those who do it ‘professionally’. They have the idea that only those who are pastors or ministry leaders should be on the front lines and the rest of us can sit in our pews. Unfortunately, that distinction is not made in the Word of God, when the disciple Peter tells us not to consider it ‘strange’ when we are faced with the ‘fiery trial’. There are struggles we all have to face, and therefore we are all on active duty.

Just as military duty entails much more than firing a weapon, service in God’s Army is more than a preacher delivering a sermon. We often see news photos of soldiers handing out food to the hungry or using their training to help out in times of natural disasters. In the same way, we are expected to reach out with God’s saving hand in every day, ordinary ways, using the talents entrusted to us.

Every day service is exhibited in the lives of those who genuinely want to share the love of Christ with others. It is the man who gives his day off every week, in order to bring food and the Word to downtown children. It is the lady who shows hospitality to those who may be new into the country and invites relative strangers to her home. It is the one who gives generously and anonymously to someone the Lord placed on his or her heart.

A soldier on duty is aware that all of his or her activities while in uniform reflect their regiment and their officer-in-charge. As a Christian, even the little things we do reflect on the One whose Name we bear. Were we polite to the cashier at the checkout or did we hold the door for the stranger leaving the store after us? Did we allow another person to take the parking space we found?

Service for you may mean giving of your vacation time and bank account in order to travel to another country to help on a short-term mission. Or you may only have enough left in your budget to bring one can of soup to your local food bank. Whether it’s a kind word to the stranger on the street or a hug to a friend who is being unfriendly, whatever exhibits the love of Christ is an act of service.

Sometimes we like to think that we are ‘on furlough’ and we can slack off, but in His Majesty’s service, there is no down time. Whether the Christian is doing spiritual battle on their knees, or comforting a battered soul, their service is always important to their Commander-in-Chief.

Written by Lorraine Walker. First published January 2007 on
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