Often times we think only of Strongholds in the negative sense but I believe we can (through the Word of God and through wisdom) build good strongholds into our lives that will hold us secure and steady throughout life.
I believe Loyalty is one such stronghold. At first glance we might think that loyalty and faithfulness are the same, but there is a subtle difference.
Loyalty in many ways is “felt”, whereas the essence of faithfulness is “active”. By definition loyalty is the feeling of devotion, attachment, duty. The definition of faithfulness is to be consistently trustworthy and loyal to a person, a promise, a duty.
Here are a handful of thoughts:
Loyalty is HEARTFELT, Faithfulness is ACTIVE
So for example, I love my husband of 28 years. My love and loyalty towards him is heartfelt, therefore I will be faithful (it is an active choice). If challenge presents itself within our marriage, then I will (out of faithfulness) choose to be active in finding wisdom and answers to negotiate the many bends and curves of doing life together.
Another example - I love the House of God. My love and loyalty towards God’s House is heartfelt, therefore I will be faithful to His House. I will not neglect to gather and I will not neglect to put His Kingdom first in my life (Hebrews 10 and Matthew 6)
I believe that loyalty and faithfulness are the very essence of God’s character. His heart towards us is ever loyal, His love for us is completely heartfelt, and because of that He remains ever faithful (even when we are unfaithful towards Him).
As a woman, I seek to be loyal to my girlfriends. My love and appreciation for my friends is heartfelt, therefore I will be faithful towards them. I won’t break their confidence, take advantage of, or become familiar with their friendship.
Loyalty and faithfulness are wonderful qualities to cultivate in your life.
Loyalty has its ORIGIN IN GOD!
Therefore it makes sense to look to God for a true measure and example of loyalty. I believe that at conversion, God’s nature (which has always been resident within) is ignited. It comes alive and begins to find expression. Our responsibility then, is to build upon that revelation in and through the Word of God. I pray that you have access to a healthy environment that will cultivate the nature and goodness of God in your life.
Life it short and it is important to be planted in the right soil, so that you might prosper in life and reach your full God designed potential (Psalm 92, 3 John v2)
Loyalty is LEARNED
We live in a world that is quite desensitized to the human heart. Basically, if it feels good do it and if it doesn’t don’t. Sadly the consequences of such a shallow philosophy often end in tragedy. I pray that we together can see a generation of godly men and women emerge, who can example Godly and correct responses to a generation in many ways, void of example.
The Bible says that “there is a way that SEEMS right to man, but the end is death”.
I challenge you to be a living, breathing example of loyalty and faithfulness to all who encounter you.
Loyalty is a STANCE
It counts the cost, it pays the price, it isn’t easily swayed, it confronts if need be and it doesn’t abdicate for an easier option.
Individuals, families, ministries, churches and businesses that build these qualities into the fabric of who they are, are usually marked with longeivity, success and blessing.
Loyalty DEFENDS WHAT IS PRECIOUS and is EXTREMELY ATTRACTIVE
Loyalty always defends what is precious and close to the heart and Proverbs 19:22 actually teaches that “Loyalty makes a person attractive”. Isn’t that lovely? I love the thought of our lives being a magnetic ’safe place’ for others. Proverbs 31 teaches how we can become that amazing person.
Loyalty TELLS A WONDERFUL STORY
Psalm 145 tells of how “one generation shall tell your great works to another”, but without these wonderful qualities of loyalty and faithfulness, there is every chance that one generation won’t hang around long enough to tell another generation anything of substance.
I pray this year will be a magnificent year for you and that the goodness and grace of God will permeate every part of your life. Together we have an opportunity to impact and influence our nation as never before. Let’s continue to build godly and good strongholds into our lives and let’s commit to being part of the answer in our nation.
© Brian Houston 2006 & © Bobbie Houston 2006