Stand Firm

Stand Firm

Blog – 4-12-17

Life can sometimes feel like it’s one step forward, three steps back. We make progress, and then we regress. The hard, painful truth is if we aren’t watching, we will end up right back where we started. Taking our progress for granted is the kiss of death because there’s no getting around it: Growth is a constant journey and something we must be intentional about staying on top of.

Step 10 speaks to this subject. It is one of the later steps, so lots of growth and change has happened by the time you get here. You’ve already worked through some really hard stuff, you’ve experienced growing pains, you’ve reconciled broken relationships, and this step is the maintenance step. It’s where you declare, “I’m not going backwards. I’m standing firm.”

Step 10 reads, We continued to take personal inventory and when we were wrong, promptly admitted it.” The Bible verse that goes along with it says:

So, if you think you are standing firm, be careful that you don’t fall!
1 Corinthians 10:12

The key words in this verse are “be careful!” Don’t take things for granted. Don’t stop staying on top of things. Don’t go back to where you’ve been.

It’s similar to servicing your car. You could keep the same oil in there and never change it (like I would do if my husband didn’t remind me!), you could ignore the check engine light, you could forget to check the other fluids, and chances are your car will run. It will seem fine…for a while, anyway. If you continue to neglect the routine maintenance for too long, however, eventually your car is going to break down.

The exact same thing is true in our lives. We must be relentless and continually do those reality checks or else eventually we will break down. We need to keep “pressing in with honesty, checking in with bravery.”

I wish I could tell you once you do a personal inventory, you never have to do another one. I wish I could assure you that once you have experienced reconciliation with someone, you never have to do that again. I wish I could say once you surrender, you never need to surrender again. But as you all know, that’s simply not true.

In order to continue on a successful path, we have to do frequent reality checks, routine maintenance, and ask ourselves those tough questions: Am I staying on course? Am I moving forward? Am I being who God created me to be? Am I standing firm?

The Good News in all of this is the more persistent we are about reflecting on our behaviors and trying to learn from our mistakes, the easier it is to do the second part of the step, the “promptly admitted it” part. Just like everything else in life, it gets easier with practice. The more often we take the time to admit our mistakes, the easier it is to see them the next time and admit we are wrong. The words “I’m sorry” don’t get stuck in our throats quite as easily the more we say them!

Bottom line, reflection helps us stand firm and avoid the backslide.

And just like the maintenance we do on our car extends its life and makes it run better, the maintenance we do in our lives, the persistent checking in, the constant surrendering, will help us run better. It will help us avoid those dreaded steps backward.

It will help us stand firm.

Enjoy the lyrics to the song for Step 10!

p.s. A quick update on the project: We are supposed to get the final mixes this weekend. Then we need to approve the artwork and send it off to press. We are SO close!!!!

Stand Firm
Words and music by Jill Miller and Rachel Barrentine © 2016

Verse 1
It’s been a journey, to get to where I am
If I’m not watching I’ll end up where I’ve been
With my world spinning round and round
Can’t take for granted the progress that I’ve made
I’m holding onto the hope of better days
With old habits crumbling down

Chorus
I will stand firm, courageous, give it all I’ve got
Stay strong, continue, stick to my resolve
Pressing in with honesty, checking in with bravery
Keep coming back, relentless, admitting when I’m wrong
Hang on, determined, cuz’ freedom is my song
With God beside me I’m secure, Christ inside me I am sure
I will stand firm

Verse 2
This life’s a battle, and I feel ready now
I’ll take the weapons God has handed out
Gonna put my armor on
Sword of the Spirit and my shield of faith
To fight the arrows of the enemy
Guarded by the Word of God

Chorus
I will stand firm, courageous, give it all I’ve got
Stay strong, continue, stick to my resolve
Pressing in with honesty, checking in with bravery
Keep coming back, relentless, admitting when I’m wrong
Hang on, determined, cuz’ freedom is my song
With God beside me I’m secure, Christ inside me I am sure
I will stand firm

Bridge
I won’t slip out of His grace when I make a mistake
Cuz His love is enough
Every decision, every step, I’ll surrender every breath
To His will, oh, I will

Chorus
Stand firm, courageous, give it all I’ve got
Stay strong, continue, stick to my resolve
Pressing in with honesty, checking in with bravery
Keep coming back, relentless, admitting when I’m wrong
Hang on, determined, cuz’ freedom is my song
With God beside me I’m secure, Christ inside me I am sure
I will stand firm

Hugs and love,

Jill

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