Some people view the Christian life as climbing up a hill, they think the only way it will go is straight up (and smoothly). But, if we are honest, a more realistic picture of our faith journey is a bumpy progression of ups and downs. How can we continue climbing, even when the going gets tough?
In today’s letter from Paul to the Philippians, the apostle echoes the topic found in Micah 4:5. The apostle Paul knew that struggles can accompany the Christian walk (for the apostle it even meant imprisonment!). But regardless of the suffering he personally experienced, Paul was determined to “press on” (Phil. 3:14). Paul’s challenge is similar to Micah’s encouragement to his readers (Mic. 4:5).
While both Micah and Paul urge God’s people to walk faithfully, they are aware of the realities of life. Micah emphasizes two points. First, he mentions that while Israel walked with the Lord, the people around them were walking with other gods. Just like the nation of Israel was intended to draw people to the Lord (see Isa. 42:6), so the church is to call people to Christ (see Matt. 28:18–20). Clearly, there is a great need for evangelism.
Second, followers of Christ must faithfully wait for the Lord’s coming. As the prophet, Micah states here, “[W]e will walk in the name of the Lord our God forever and ever” (4:5). Paul warns Christ-followers not to focus “on earthly things” (Phil. 3:19). While it is tempting to agonize over the immorality of our culture, Paul reminds us that “our citizenship is in heaven” (v. 20). Keeping our focus on our end goal gives us strength for the journey!
>> Has your journey with Christ been more like a straight incline or a series of ups and downs? It is helpful to share with younger believers the struggles you have gone through. Your story can encourage them to keep walking faithfully with Jesus. Read Micah 4:5.
“All nations may walk in the name of their gods, but we will walk in the name of the LORD our God for ever and ever” (Micah 4:5). Grant us conviction to honor Your ways, even when that means defying our culture.