Friday, November 16, 2012

Stand in the Gap

One of my favorite children’s books is Hans Brinker, or the Silver Skates by Mary Mapes Dodge. I learned a lot about Holland from that book, including the amazing way the Dutch reclaimed land from the sea by building dikes. In the book, Dodge retells a well known story about the little boy who saw a hole in the dike and stuck his finger in it to keep the sea from leaking through and flooding the land. He plugged the hole all night, until adults found him and repaired the dike.

This verse reminded me of that story, except there was no little boy, or little girl or man or woman, to stand in the gap in the wall. Like Holland’s dikes, the wall of righteousness protects the land and the people who live in it. It protects God’s people from evil but it’s broken down because we live in a fallen world. Since it has been breached, evil pours in through the gap and the land will be destroyed. God’s looking for someone to stand in the gap and fight the evil. 

Someone's not doing her job. I can look around for the people who should be doing it. I can look for the preachers and youth leaders and Bible study teachers and evangelists and Christian politicians and Christian businessmen. They need to be doing more, doing it better. But in this moment God’s not looking at them.

He’s looking at me. He wants me to stand in the gap.

How can I stop evil from pouring into the land? I'm not great spiritual warrior with powerful weapons to fight evil. I don’t have any influence. I don’t have great wisdom or knowledge. But all God is asking is for me to stand in the gap. I can be like the little boy who used what he had until more skilled people arrived to take over. The little boy’s finger became part of the dike when he used it to close the hole. In the same way, I can become part of the wall. I can do that by doing right, by obeying His commands and walking in His ways. I can do it by being kind and loving. I can do it by living a righteous life. 

Yeah, I can do that. I mean, it’s what I try to do every day. It’s what I ask the Holy Spirit to do in me daily. If living my life to please God is what it takes to stand in the gap, I’ll do it.

More than that, I need to do it. In the days of Ezekiel, God looked for someone to stand in the gap and didn’t find anyone. So He had to destroy the land.


Please let Him find me doing my job. Let me be there standing in the gap when He looks for someone. Let me add my insignificant life to the wall of righteousness until more capable servants can get here to repair the wall. Don't let the land be destroyed because I wasn't willing.

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