I love saying that. I climbed a mountain. Why? Because its there?
Because human beings need to conquer things. Guys especially, but ask my Shauna what it feels like to cross the finish line after a half marathon, and she’ll grin ear to ear.
Oh, you’re made to conquer, all right, God says.
Sometimes we feel like victims, like hapless pawns in giant corporate chess matches, like flaky leaves swirling around in the changing winds of autumn.
36 As it is written:
“For your sake we face death all day long;
we are considered as sheep to be slaughtered.”
Is that the final word, though? That’s it? We’re sheep, in line for punishment. We live, we die, we march from here to there and back again with pointless verve?
37 No, in all these things we are more than conquerors…” ~Romans 8:36,37.
No, Paul says. Don’t let your heads go there. You are a conquerer. But more than that. More than a conqueror.
More? What could be more? The next verse unpacks the more.
It comes “through him who loved us.”
38 For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, 39neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.
We are dearly, passionately, heroically loved…conquerors.
So even if I screw up, or fail, or fall short, or bite it, I don’t cease to be a conqueror, because God loves me anyway. Even if I don’t measure up, God’s love does, and overcomes my weakness, and takes me the rest of the way.
So, two questions:
– What, if anything, have you conquered lately? If you haven’t conquered anything, you’re probably feeling a bit stale. As you should.
– And two, when was the last time you simply accepted and basked in the glorious love of Jesus Christ? If you can’t remember, you’re probably feeling a little empty. As you should.
Go stand in front of the mirror. Wait! Not yet. In a minute. Look yourself in the eye, and say out loud, “I am a conqueror.” How does that feel? True? Untrue? Did you laugh? Cry? Remember something you’d rather forget? Think of something that’s going to need conquering next week? Talk to God about that, whatever that is.
Next, say to yourself, “You are loved, and nothing in all of creation, nothing past, present, or future, can separate you from God’s love. You’re safe.” How does that feel? Sappy? Obvious? True, but not for you? Do you wish you felt it more?
Looks like you conquered the whole website thing! It looks great, too. I really liked this post and (as is eerily often the case) it nails my heart down right where it is. Stale? Check. Empty? Check.
I just finished reading The Relentless Tenderness of Jesus (Brennan Manning) and it really showed me just how much I need a reorientation (or ‘apocalypse’). Such a great unpacking of a passage I’ve read at least a hundred times.
Blessings on the new site–I’ll get my feed changed over so I don’t miss a thing.
Thanks Sarah. That’s so encouraging. 🙂
Just yesterday I went to the public skate at Cardel and taught myself how to stop! After 30+ years of crashing into the boards (or other people) or simply spinning in a circle until I fall down, I can finally stop when and where I need to (mostly). After reading your post I definitely feel like a conqueror. Even better though, my mind is filled with the similarities between learning to skate and living a Christ-filled life. Slippery ice, hard falls, wobbly balance…then grace-filled movement, forward motion, exhilaration and pure joy. God is great!
You ‘da man. Seriously. Love the analogy too.
After watching the special last night on Jaycee Dugard and her ‘ability’ to conquer the bitterness, the hardness of heart, the anger, I told myself what excuse do I have? I have not been in her situation of captivity yet when I allow my ‘unforgiving spirit’ to reside in my heart am I not as ‘chained and handcuffed’ as she was? Not literally you know what I mean, her story is horrific and awful yet she came out a strong, survivor. We all have mountains to conquer it is how we get to the other side that matters.