When you get kicked down, God will help you stand up

Published 5:39 am Saturday, October 8, 2022

In “A View from the Zoo,” Gary Richmond tells about the birth of a giraffe: “The first things to emerge are the baby giraffe’s front hooves and head. A few minutes later the plucky newborn calf is hurled forth, falls ten feet, and lands on its back.
Within seconds, he rolls to an upright position with his legs tucked under his body. From this position, he considers the world for the first time and shakes off the last vestiges of the birthing fluid from his eyes and ears.
“The mother giraffe lowers her head long enough to take a quick look. Then she waits for about a minute, and then she does the most unreasonable thing.
She swings her long, pendulous leg outward and kicks her baby, so that it is sent sprawling head over heels.
“When it doesn’t get up, the violent process is repeated over and over again. The struggle to rise is momentous. As the baby calf grows tired, the mother kicks it again to stimulate its efforts. Finally, the calf stands for the first time on its wobbly legs. Then the mother giraffe does the most remarkable thing. She kicks it off its feet again.
She wants it to remember how it got up. In the world, baby giraffes must be able to get up as quickly as possible in order to stay with the herd, where there is safety.
Lions, hyenas, leopards, and wild hunting dogs all enjoy young giraffes, and they’d get eaten if the mother didn’t teach her calf to get up quickly and get with it.
“I’ve thought about the birth of the giraffe many times. I can see its parallel in my own life. There have been many times when it seemed that I had just stood up after a trial, only to be knocked down again by the next. It was God helping me to remember how it was that I got up, urging me always to walk with Him, in His shadow, under His care.”
Has your life been full of trials?
Does it seem like you are always getting up just in time to get knocked down again?
It may comfort you to know that you are not alone.
In fact, everyone goes through times of trouble.
So, what makes the difference between those who are successful in life and those who aren’t?
The answer: Perseverance!
The Bible tells us in Proverbs 24:16, “A righteous man falls seven times and rises up again; but the wicked shall fall into mischief.”
As you can see from this verse, even righteous people fall down.
But the key is: you must rise up again!
Don’t stay under the circumstances, don’t be a quitter.
God uses failure to build character and faith.
The great baseball player, Babe Ruth, hit 714 homeruns…but he also struck out 1,330 times.
Henry Ford failed to put a reverse gear on the first car he made.
Albert Einstein failed his university entrance exam the first time.
Then, there was the young man who twice failed in business, his childhood sweetheart died before they could be married, and he had a nervous breakdown at age 27.
Then he decided to go into politics.
He ran for speaker of the House and was defeated, he ran for Congress twice and was defeated, he ran for senator twice and was defeated and he even ran for vice president and was defeated!
Finally, at the age of 51, he was elected president of the United States.
His name? Abraham Lincoln.
You see, failure isn’t final with your heavenly Father.
God’s love for you is greater than any mistakes you’ve made.
So, the next time you get knocked down, look to God for help.
And no matter what life throws at you — get back up and keep going!

Rev. Doug Johnson is the senior pastor at Raven Assembly of God in Raven, Virginia.

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