If you have spent any time at all in these blog postings, you know that Alean and I have a cat, though we often refer to him as “It” or “The Pest.” “Did you feed it?” “I would get up and get you a glass of water, but I have ‘this’ on my lap.” His name is “Mister Bear.” And for all the whining we do about him, he really is a good cat. And he teaches me more than I care to admit.
We also have a crow. We are not certain where he lives, but we know it is somewhere close by because he is kind of “our” crow. He is here almost every day annoying Mister Bear. Now, in order to grasp what I’m about to share with you, you need to understand that Mister Bear is a rather large cat – larger than he appears to be in his many photographs on this blog. Not only is he a big cat, he is a mighty hunter. He is a phenomenal mouser, and has even caught some birds. If Mister Bear got it in his head to do so, he could rip the crow to shreds. Of that, I have no doubt.
A couple of days ago, early in the morning, our crow arrived for the daily festivities, but on this particular morning something had changed. Something was different, because the crow was excessively vocal. “Caw! Caw! Caw! Caw! Caw! Caw!” He would not stop, but rather continued this for such an extended length of time that Alean grabbed her bathrobe and headed out the back door to see what had gotten the crow so worked up. I was following behind at a slower pace.
When Alean arrived at the scene of the disturbance, she stood looking toward the front of the garage with her arms folded across her chest, her mouth hanging just slightly open, and a “What is your problem?” look on her face. Here is what she saw – the crow had cornered Mister Bear, and was keeping him in the corner by yelling at him.
How was this happening? Mister Bear is three times the size of the crow, with claws. He could eat that crow for lunch. Yet he cowered in fear, backed into his corner – by a BIRD!!
Now, here is the point, my friends. For many of you, life just beats the snot out of you. I know this, because I talk to you, and because it happened to me for several years – because I let it. But here is the good news: You are the crow! The world is up in our faces day in and day out, and far too many Christ-followers cower in fear like Mister Bear in front of this dauntless little crow.
“Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or danger, or sword? As it is written, ‘For your sake we are being killed all the day long; we are regarded as sheep to be slaughtered.'” (Romans 8:35–36 – ESV)
Does that describe how life feels to you sometimes? Wanna know the answer? Hupernikomen!! That’s right. Say it with me – Hupernikomen!! Feel the impact of this verse:
No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us. (Romans 8:37 – ESV)
It is pronounced “hoo-purr-NIK-oh-men” and you need to say it every morning as soon as you wake up. “I am hupernikomen – a Super-Conquerer. I am the crow!!”
Take a look at the list of things the apostle Paul says we conquer through Christ. Trouble. Distress (You ever feel that one?). Persecution. Famine. Nakedness. Danger. Even death itself.
Do we always bypass these things? No. Of course not. But are we bowled over by them? No! We are hupernikomen – Super Conquerers! This goes beyond the idea of being victorious. It is what one writer calls, “A holy arrogance of victory in the might of Christ.”* I heard it said once, “We are so far from being conquered by [these troubles], that they do us much good.”**
If you stand in Christ’s love, nothing can shake you from that. Not trouble, stress, peril, persecution, death, not even your own moral failure. Nothing can separate you, or me from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord.
“For I am sure that neither death nor life, nor angels nor rulers, nor things present nor things to come, nor powers, nor height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord.” Romans 8:38-39 – ESV).
Victoriously in Christ!
* Vincent, M. R. (1887). Word studies in the New Testament (Vol. 3, p. 98). New York: Charles Scribner’s Sons.
** Jamieson, R., Fausset, A. R., & Brown, D. (1997). Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible (Vol. 2, p. 244). Oak Harbor, WA: Logos Research Systems, Inc.”
Over to you: How does knowing you are a Super Conquerer change the way you walk in the midst of the world’s assaults?