The Courage to Stand Up

By Garris Elkins

Plans and policies are being instituted in our nation, and in other countries around the world, that are test runs for greater measures of control and forced submission. While some people of faith have abandoned any thought of intervention thinking it is a form of intellectual or spiritual violence, they remain uninformed, passive, and disconnected while suffering that could have been confronted and avoided is allowed to expand the scope of its influence. 

Yesterday, my wife and I met over coffee with some new friends. As we got to know each other, the wife shared about a study given to students in a psychology class. The professor placed a fishbowl in the center of the classroom and had all the students move their chairs to form a circle around the fishbowl. Inside the fishbowl was a single goldfish.

The professor removed the goldfish and tossed it on the floor. To the shock of the students, the goldfish began to flop around trying to find water to survive. The professor told the students they were not to interfere or attempt to rescue the goldfish. If they did, they would fail the class.

After a few tense moments, as the goldfish continued to flop about, one student said the equivalent of “To heck with this!” and got up and scooped the goldfish into her hands and put it back in the fishbowl. At that point, the professor stopped the experiment. He told the students to notice how easy it is to stay seated and disengaged when someone in authority warns them not to do what they know is right.

He told the students they had been conditioned to comply with such a command even when they knew the right thing to do. They failed to respond for fear of being punished or ostracized because they went against the grain of a compliant crowd.

At this time in history when evil is gaining greater traction, titles, advanced degrees, or influence gained by aligning with the spirit of the age will not be what defines the next generation of emerging leaders within the Church. 

These new leaders will not have any of the trappings the world uses to define a leader. Their single characteristic will be their willingness to stand up when told to remain seated. They will stand up and rescue those who are dying under the manipulation and control that exists within their families, communities, and government and sadly, within some parts of the Church.  

These courageous ones will exhibit the spirit of David when the Israelite army remained frozen under a spell of fear cast by Goliath. A true leader will always stand up to do the right thing when others choose to remain seated.

Ps. Adding relevant links to a former post of me:

Sounding the Alarm

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