I have been pondering a simple sentence this week. It has no big words in it yet it is for me packed with weighty meaning. Here it is: ‘I am no longer on my own.’ It is one way to sum up the whole Christian life. I no longer have to go it alone.
Let me illustrate. I have served as interim pastor at Abundant Grace this past year but I did not have to ‘go it alone.’ I had a coach to talk to every week and seek advice from. How comforting it has been for me to have this weekly call to my mentor who would speak wise counsel into my life. I don’t have full knowledge. I need others to guide me.
Similarly, a person calls out to God when he realizes how inadequate he is in dealing with all the challenges and troubles of life. It takes an honest person to admit that he has failed to measure up, that he truly knows very little about himself, other people and how to succeed in the world in ways that matter. Such a person, out of the depths of weakness cries out to God for help, forgiveness, wisdom, love, and a deeply satisfying purpose in living. And God answers that call for help. Every time.
Being a Christian means that we are united with God! ‘I am no longer on my own.’ God is with me, in me, around me, in front of me, behind me, over me and for me. And if God is for me, who can be against me?
So reader if you are still with me, stop trying to live ‘on your own.’ You can’t do it. Call upon God. All the time. He is your Father and your Friend. He unites Himself with you! Amazing! And if God is with you, you can become a beautiful person who does beautiful things, just like Jesus.
Here is the way Thomas a Kempis states it.
When Jesus is with us, all is well and nothing seems insurmountable. But when Jesus is absent, everything is difficult. If Jesus does not speak to us inwardly, all other comfort is meaningless. But the slightest communication from him brings consolation.
Life without Jesus is like a dry garden, baking in the sun. It is foolish to want anything that conflicts with Jesus. What can the world give you without Jesus? His absence is hell; his presence, paradise. If Jesus is with you, no enemy can injure you. Whoever finds Jesus has discovered a great treasure, the best of all possible good. The loss of him is a tremendous misfortune, more than the loss of the entire world. Poverty is life without Jesus, but close friendship with him is incalculable wealth (Imitation of Christ, paraphrase by Bernard Bangley).
With love in Jesus,