“Release the Kraken!”
That’s a favorite movie quote of mine. The Kraken is a mythical sea monster that was kept under control until it was time to do some damage. Scott’s sermon this past week was also about strength under control. The Bible calls it “meekness,” which some mistakenly equate to weakness. As Scott explained, an example of meekness is the idea of a tamed animal, such as a horse. Unfortunately, that’s a concept I’m very familiar with.
I grew up in a rural area where horses were plentiful, but I never really had a desire to ride. However, when some friends offered to take us riding I thought, “Sure, why not?” We followed the typical trail ride technique, horses following each other at a leisurely pace.
After conquering that, I started channeling my inner cowboy so I asked, “Hey, can I take her out in the pasture and try a gallop?” My friend reluctantly agreed and soon I was at one end of the field giving my valiant steed a swift kick and a “Giddyup!” That was obviously the cue for the horse to release the strength he had been keeping under control.
The next few minutes are still a blur of terror and shouting “Whoa!” Judging from the start out the gates, my horse must have had some unfulfilled dream of competing in the Kentucky Derby. I had no control over that animal whatsoever. Soon, we were headed straight for a group of three cows minding their own business. I swear when they looked up I could see their eyes widen. Cows may look slow, but let me tell you, they can jump out of the way quickly when they see a screaming, colorless rider on an out of control horse bearing down on them.
After successfully dodging the bovines, I realized the tree line was rapidly approaching. Luckily, as I was calculating limb evasion techniques, my little filly decided it was time to stop…and head back across the pasture at the same clip. When we got back to our starting place, my friend just stepped in front of the horse and said, “Whoa, girl.” I guess I had the wrong inflection in my voice when I said “Whoa” over a hundred times. No matter, I was just glad to find the ground on my own terms.
At the appointed time, my horse released the strength that was previously held in check. As Christ-followers we have the strength of the Holy Spirit dwelling within us. We keep this strength internalized most of the time, but consider these situations when our hidden strength needs to become visible:
- Boldly sharing our faith
- Defending our faith and biblical principles in a world marred by sin
- Coming to the aid of those in difficult situations to comfort and provide tangible support
Yes, we are to show the love of Christ in compassion and gentleness, but there are times when love comes in the form of assertiveness and a firm resolve to stand for what’s right. As we encounter those situations, we should pray and ask for wisdom. If the Lord gives the OK, “Release the meek!”