Hebrews 12:2-3 (The Message)
2 Keep your eyes on Jesus, who both began and finished this race we’re in. Study how He did it. Because He never lost sight of where He was headed – that exhilarating finish in and with God – He could put up with anything along the way: cross, shame, whatever. And now He’s there, in the place of honor, right alongside God.
3 When you find yourself flagging in your faith, go over that story again, item by item, that long litany of hostility he plowed through. That will shoot adrenaline into your souls!
When you’re down and lonely and you need a helping hand.
James Taylor, a troubadour in every sense of the word, sang these lyrics in his song, “You’ve Got a Friend.” Now first things first…I am not even sure what the word troubadour means. I know it has something to do with music, and I think it sounds cool, but whether or not James Taylor is one is up to someone who wants to take the time to get a dictionary and look up the word and see if he matches the definition, as for me, it’s not relevant, I just wanted to use the word.
Now back to the lyric. When he says, when you are down and lonely I think he is making an assumption that we are going to be down and lonely. And it is a good assumption, because all of us at some time or another feel down, lonely, depressed, not right, unhappy, etc and etc. The question is, what do we do when we come to a point like that in our lives.
No offense to Mr. Taylor, but reaching out for someone’s hand, while nice, may not offer the comfort and peace we seek, especially if what we are going through is a crisis of faith or dealing with many of the other ‘issues of life’ that we so often face. And believe it or not, even Christians face issues from time to time (like every day).
So when faced with a struggle, when faced with tough times, when faced with being down and lonely, what do we need? Again, we need more than a helping hand, we need to recognize what our feelings are and then how to respond.
This may sound harsh, but our feelings of loneliness, depression, sadness, etc and/or etc, while possibly valid, are actually a slap in the face of God. Right? I mean, think about it, God has promised to never leave you or forsake you, he promised to never give you more than you can handle, promised to always have a way out for what you are dealing with, has saved you from your sins, promised you a brighter tomorrow, has offered his grace and mercy, not only on a daily, but on a moment-by-moment basis…so any whining or complaining on our parts constitutes a lack of faith, doesn’t it?
Well, I say yes. And if you are in a situation where you are feeling out of it, the Bible in Hebrews 12:2-3 gives us the remedy. First, keep your eyes on Jesus. Simple enough, right? But as we read the verse it tells us to be reminded of what He is, what He has done. It tells us to go over the story again. Like a favorite song or scene from a movie you can watch over and over again and still be moved, the story of Jesus should be like that…we need to often be reminded of Jesus. Read His story, remember what He has done and the fear, pain, hurt will go away.
I LOVE the way the Message puts it…remembering HIS story will SHOOT ADRENALINE THROUGH YOUR SOULS. A shot of adrenaline, I could use some of that! Can you?