Be on your guard; stand firm in the faith; be courageous; be strong.
-1 Corinthians 16:13
Throughout scripture, a common theme exists: be brave.
What does bravery look like to you? Maybe it’s a strong face in the middle of a bad diagnosis. Or perhaps it is the men and women who jump into the midst of burning buildings and war zones to find a save the innocent.
What if bravery was having the faith to push through another hard day?
The Apostle Paul, writing to the church in the city of Corinth, encouraged these young believers to stand strong in the midst of difficult circumstances. Not only was the city they lived in seeking to prevent them from gathering in the name of Jesus, but there was also fighting breaking out in the middle of their own gatherings. The young church was full of different people who had various opinions on how they should meet, their worship, and what living a godly life truly looked like. Sound familiar, right?
Paul, instead of reprimanding the believers in Corinth, encouraged each of them to remember why they were gathering in the first place – Jesus. The fact that Jesus Himself experienced various trials and tribulations of His life and ministry reminds us that we can stand courageously in our own trials. Why? Because nothing can happen to us that Jesus Himself does not know, and has not already overcome!
Because we have died with Christ, we are hidden with Him in God. (Colossians 3:3) Nothing we go through can truly harm us. In light of this amazing truth, Paul says that we can stand our guard against the enemies of our lives and move forward each day with purpose and hope!
Questions For Reflection on 1 Corinthians 16:13
#1 Name a trial that you are experiencing right now. What does this verse say about your trial, and how will you change your perspective now that you know that God is with you?
#2 Do you know of someone else who is experiencing a difficult time right now? How can you use the truth of Paul’s words in 1 Corinthians to encourage them to push through, and perhaps find their hope in Jesus?
Lord Jesus, we pray for bravery and strength in the midst of difficult circumstances. We know that we alone cannot stand against the struggles in our lives, but we know that nothing that happens to us is outside of Your knowledge. Your love reaches through the darkest storm cloud, and we rejoice in the fact that eternal life with you awaits us at the end of our days. Help us to live with courage and faith each and every day!
Natalie Regoli is a child of God, devoted wife, and mother of two boys. She has a Master's Degree in Law from The University of Texas. Natalie has been published in several national journals and has been practicing law for 18 years.