Stand And Praise

I know it’s a bit premature, but we got a taste of fall last Sunday!  The temperatures were the lowest of the summer, there was a nice breeze and the leaves were falling off the tree in the upper parking lot at church. What caught my attention was a leaf. Yep, a simple red-colored leaf. As I walked in the parking lot, I noticed this leaf standing tall in a crevice of the asphalt.  (See the actual picture) Most leaves simply lie flat when they fall, but this one had fallen in such a way that it stuck straight up, almost as if it were on display. 


The red color and the position of the leaf caught my attention and caused me to capture a photo. There was something about this leaf that illustrated to me how God uses us in even the most difficult of situations.


Here was a common leaf, but it was standing straight up. Its brilliant color was on display. It was embedded in such a way in the asphalt crevice that I admired the leaf for standing firm. While other leaves were blowing across the parking lot, this one leaf held tight. The psalmist, David, described the Lord’s hand in stabilizing us and causing us to stand firm, even in the crevices and pits of life.  David wrote: 


Psalm 40:1,2

I waited patiently for the Lord;

He turned to me and heard my cry.

He lifted me out of the slimy pit,

Out of the mud and mire;

He set my feet on a rock

And gave me a firm place to stand.


The foundation of our lives as believers is the rock of Jesus Christ. When others are blown about by circumstances and falling into pits and crevices, the strength of God resides within his children. He causes us to stand. He causes us to stand out. He causes us to stand up. He causes us to stand firm.  Why is that?  According to this psalm, we are caused to stand so that we can praise!  The very next verse reads:


Psalm 40:3

He put a new song in my mouth,

A hymn of praise to our God.

Many will see and fear the Lord

And put their trust in Him.


And later in this same psalm is this powerful truth:


Psalm 40:5

None can compare with you;

Were I to speak and tell of your deeds, 

They would be too many to declare.


David wrote this song when he was surrounded by trouble. But, that was not going to stop his praise to the Lord!  When knocked to the ground, God will cause you to stand! When life is challenging, opportunities abound for you to stand firm for Him. Your praise will show the power and goodness of God despite the situation. And yes, others WILL notice.  Your witness, your light, your testimony, your stand, your song and your praise will point to the one who lifts you up!  And when you do, many will see and fear the Lord and put their trust in Him!  So, stand firm my friend with the help of the Lord, let nothing move you, and keep praising!