“The world waits in hopes to see,
One little flaw on my identity,
Will perfection point them to You,
Or will this nature prove You true?”
I have been employed by a variety of places over the years. From retail to clerical, education to janitorial – all have held a unique list of responsibilities. Though retail was my least favorite, everything else was a little more down my alley as it included computers, papers, and files. An administrator’s dream!
One thing each job had in common, though, was the colorful variety of people I worked with. Not all of them, unfortunately, held the same godly values I did. Each time I started a new job, I had a choice to make. I could let the values of the people I worked with decide how I was going to act and live, or I could “hold to my way.”
“Yet the righteous will hold to his way, and he who has clean hands will be stronger and stronger.” Job 17:9
One way to “hold” is to be like a plane in a holding pattern, just circling as it attempts to land. Any pilot will tell us that this is not the ideal position to be in. They are not accomplishing anything other than simply burning fuel. It’s unstable and uncertain. It’s a survival mode until conditions say it’s safe to land.
We may feel like we’re in a holding pattern in our lives as we struggle to maintain our integrity on our own tank of fuel. It’s not just at work that we get hit with opportunities to slip up. If we step inside the mall, a theater, or a gas station, something will be there to tempt us. Living in the world pure doesn’t require our perfection, however; it requires our total dependency on God and the strength that He promised through His Holy Spirit. With Him to lean on, we can bypass the racks of clothes offering outfits that are less than modest. We can say “no thanks” to a night out partying, and hold our tongue when everyone around us is swearing their hearts out. We can resist the temptation to participate in gossip, or lose our temper when our testimony could be at stake. No temptation is too great when God is supporting and guiding our every move.
Our Pilot doesn’t want us to be stuck in a holding pattern in the sense that we’re just surviving. His idea of “holding” is not letting go of what we believe – for anyone or anything. In fact, the more we choose to live for Him and in His holiness, the stronger we get. We don’t lose fuel circling; we gain a whole new tank to keep us going! Each time we do, we’ll grow stronger and stronger, soaring higher and higher. It’s then that people are drawn to our one and only Pilot – Jesus Christ!
“I’m holding to my way, this path I’ve chosen.
Holding to my way to model heaven.
When they look they’ll see good works in me.
I’m holding to my way for You.”
(song lyrics © 2007)