Stoop to conquer!
Life is not a continuous series of endless struggling to live a human life. It is not a senseless battle with forces that are beyond our control. Stormy weather may come our way. Yet it is not the end of our story. Life offers no one a gift on a platter. It makes great demands on us, yet, it is always to our advantage.
Life is not for the timid and those who fear to move forward in confidence. Deep within us, there is a force which draws us on, refusing to yield to our moments of weakness and our temptations to despair. The highway of history is cluttered with the wreckage of people who embarked on ambitious pursuits, but later gave up the challenge.
"Fortune favours the brave," is an old cliché. Yet, it is forever new. Day by day, it reveals itself in many ways in the decisions that people make and the struggle against all odds which many undertake. Life means nothing if it is not a call to upward reach as we pursue our destiny. One of the inspirational sayings displayed at the Primary School at Wesley in my youthful days was: "Let excelsior be your watchword."
Easter, the passage of our Lord Jesus Christ through death to life, is the greatest celebration of Christians throughout the world. Christ allowed himself to be brought low. This is not a glorification of abasement, nor is it a triumph of defeat. What it marks is the heroic life of one who consecrated his life to truth and justice and was willing to pay the price for it. He was despised and rejected, but he was assured that he would be vindicated, that he would be proven right. The moral courage which Jesus exercised in his life has been a source of inspiration to men and women throughout the centuries. But, more than that, his life of sacrifice for all that is good and up-building has been a channel of energy and strength for all those who choose to walk in his footsteps.
Human life has been a long story of people who, not recognizing their dignity, have yielded to the machinations of people who manipulate them and use them for their own selfish purposes. Compromise of their sacred values, when faced with people who are unscrupulous and over-ambitious, is a mark of small minds and feeble hearts. They are not far to seek in a world where craving for selfish pursuits holds sway.
Jesus Christ is a great role model for all men. Too many there are who have no backbone, no firm dispositions, no permanent values. Many there are who blow with the wind or allow themselves to be carried by adverse currents and tumultuous seas and never come to port.
Jesus Christ has turned the tables of history upside down. While men seek glory here on earth, he allowed all human ambition to pass him by. He was denied the bare decency that is owed to every man. He allowed himself to be brought low that his greatness might shine out beyond the grave. Because he humbled himself, he stooped low, he has conquered the world.