(Posted April 22, 2014)
Role models are important.
In Resilient Warriors, I highlighted Jesus as the Ultimate Resilient Warrior, stating that “Jesus remained a role model of resilience, courage, and comfort to others in His darkest hour of physical agony and spiritual separation from His Heavenly Father.” Likewise, in Resilient Leaders I put a bright light on Jesus as the Ultimate Resilient Leader:
“Not only can leaders have redemption and forgiveness of sins through the person of Jesus, they can also have the ‘secret sauce’ of leadership which affords them unmatched resources to lead selflessly with character and competence, to lead with resilience over time, and to lead from a position of dependence, devotion, and direction which is rooted in the Creator God Himself. Jesus truly was the Ultimate Resilient Leader. We do well to Follow Him.”
As I look Easter 2014 in the rear view mirror, I am reminded of some marvelous truths which illustrate Jesus Christ’s ultimate resilience and relevance to each of us. Jesus weathered a “storm” of cultural and religious persecution, betrayal, flogging, and ultimately crucifixion. While other humans, even our closest friends, cannot truly understand the depths and distinctives of our own pain and suffering, we can truly say and believe that “Jesus understands.” Not only does He understand, but He loves, and forgives, and accepts, and binds up our wounds. From Hebrews 12:3, “Consider Him who has endured such hostility against Himself, so that you will not grow weary and lose heart.” Know that Jesus truly understands whatever you and I may be going through on this journey of life.
And this is just the beginning of the Easter story. Jesus defeated death, He won the ultimate victory over Satan, and through resurrection He “bounced up” all the way to Heaven to sit at the right hand of God the Father as our Advocate. This is ultimate resilience! And His act of “substitutionary atonement” on our behalf allows us the same resilience, both temporally and eternally. For our temporal days on earth, we have the amazing indwelling of God’s Holy Spirit which provides comfort, counsel, and resilience under the toughest of life’s challenges. “Greater is He who is in us than he who is in the world.”
Similarly, as each of us succumbs to physical death, we as Christians can also “bounce up” to life in eternity with the very God who created us. “He who has the Son has life, he who does not have the Son of God does not have eternal life.”
For warriors in every walk of life, including our military, these are powerful truths which allow us to be strong and courageous.
We can be strong and courageous as we face tomorrow, and as we face eternity. This confident knowledge that “if God is for us, who can be against us” allows us to be “more than victors through Him who loved us.”
“The horse is prepared for the day of battle,
But VICTORY belongs to the LORD”
Respectfully in Christ,
Major General Bob Dees
U.S. Army, Retired
©RFD LLC 2014
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Download a PDF of this April 2014 blog post.