I can still vividly recall the events one late night in the spring of 1967 during my first tour of duty in Pleiku in the Vietnam War.
Around midnight I heard a sound that woke me from my deep sleep. It was the ominous sound of enemy mortar rounds walking toward us in our battalion base camp on Artillery Hill. I had recently returned from six months of field duty as a forward observer.
My first reaction was to hit the floor since it was obvious the mortar shells were quickly getting closer with every thump. My next reaction was to shoot up a quick prayer and hope for the best. This was no time to get on my knees. Lying prostrate was by far the safest position.
That next morning, I found a piece of shrapnel in the bed post above my bunk. My prayer had been answered, but it was quickly forgotten. Not all in our battalion were as fortunate.
Being brought to our knees can be a humbling experience. Perhaps you can recall one or more life circumstances having an impact on your future direction.
Over the years, I’ve been brought to my knees on other occasions and have now come to understand that God places me in certain circumstances to increase my faith. Since accepting Christ as my Savior and Lord in 1984, my personal relationship has grown stronger with each of those incidents.
Don’t get me wrong, folks. I haven’t always accepted whatever has come my way. But these days, I now quickly realize that He is working intimately to draw me into His presence.
Perhaps you don’t place much credence in God’s presence at such times, but I personally believe He is there watching over all our circumstances. In some miraculous way, I sense He orchestrates all these special circumstances to test us and ultimately bring us closer to Him.
Let me share an important principle I’ve gleaned over the years, which I feel has helped me better align with my Heavenly Father’s will for my life. I now realize there are times I need to be on my knees as I solicit wisdom to better comprehend His will for my life — His good, pleasing and perfect will.
That’s part of the transformation that’s continually taking place in my personal journey. As I’ve aged, it’s become more challenging to literally get on my knees and, in time, I may well be physically unable to do so. But there’s good news: The real kneeling need not be physical but simply in my heart and mind!
God wants us to have a humble attitude and a proper perspective all the remaining days of our lives. He’s not interested in our sacrifice, but He dearly wants our complete and total obedience. The sooner we learn to be in His will, the sooner we can be delivered from being brought to our knees!
So, please consider turning from your sinful desires and asking for His forgiveness. He doesn’t have any need of your sacrifice. That was already provided by Christ on that old rugged cross 2,000 years ago. All we must do is accept the gift of salvation and humbly acknowledge Him as Savior and Lord.
In Revelation 3:20, the Lord Himself invites, “Behold, I stand at the door and knock: if any one hears My voice and opens the door, I will come in to him, and will dine with him, and he with Me.” That’s quite an invitation from the King of kings and the Lord of lords!
He dearly wants to get your undivided attention before it’s too late.
Passages to Ponder
— Jim Langley has been writing for more than 30 years while working as a life and health insurance agent in Santa Barbara. In recent years, his passion has turned to writing about his personal relationship with God, and his goal is to encourage others to draw near to Him as well. As a longtime member of CBMC of Santa Barbara (Christian Business Men’s Connection), he started writing Fourth Quarter Strategies columns in 2014, and he now reaches an international audience through the CBMC International devotional Monday Manna. He can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org for more information. Click here for previous columns. The opinions expressed are his own.