Tuesday, November 27, 2012
FROM WHENCE IS YOUR STRENGTH COMING?
I count on my own strength too much. I forget too often that God is the source of all my strengths: physical, emotional, mental, and spiritual. He knows how I should get from Step 1 to Step 2 far better than I. My “word” for 2013 is going to be Wait--wait on the Lord before I make any decisions. How about you?
ETERNAL PERSPECTIVES by Sally Bair
After my knee gave out on Honeymoon Bluff trail and the EMTs whisked me to the hospital, a nurse in ER handed me a pair of crutches. For several days those crutches helped support me while walking.
My crutches made me feel off-balance, however. They gave me sore muscles in my arms and hands. They tripped me up and anyone else in my way. But they were a good substitute for my painful leg and I’m thankful for their use.
Sometimes we use emotional crutches, too. People who suffer from loneliness, anger, or bitterness often use the crutch of alcohol or drugs to cover their feelings. Others carry the crutch of criticism and a judgmental attitude to prop up their low self-esteem. Some spend money extravagantly out of envy or their need for self-importance.
At times, we all need the crutches of support from someone—a family member, mentor or teacher, friend, or spiritual leader. Jesus is the ultimate Someone on whom we can lean. As the Good Shepherd, He becomes our legs when we’re weak, our arms when we’re too tired to serve, our mouths when we don’t know what to say. He comforts us when we face situations too difficult for us to handle. He protects us, leads and guides us, and provides for all our needs because He loves us like no other—not like family, not like friends. All He requires is our faith and obedience.
Christians are often accused of using their faith as a crutch, too weak to solve their own problems—as though that’s a bad thing. But the Bible tells us we’re like sheep that have gone astray, so God truly is our ultimate crutch, the One we can cling to and trust when we falter or fall.
“The Lord is my Shepherd; I shall not want. He makes me to lie down in green pastures; He leads me beside the still waters. He restores my soul; He leads me in the paths of righteousness for His name’s sake. Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil; for You are with me; Your rod and Your staff, they comfort me. You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies; You anoint my head with oil; my cup runs over. Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life; and I will dwell in the house of the Lord forever.” (Psalm 23)
Lord, thank You for guiding and restoring us, for being our provider and comforter. In Jesus’ name, amen.