So what does it look like to “get into the water?” (See yesterday’s post.) Well, you can’t experience buoyancy if your feet are planted firmly on the terra firma. Likewise, you can’t learn confidence in Christ if you want to keep a ‘back-up plan’ in your rear pocket! Sometimes, if we’re serious about growing our faith, Christ will help us in this by leading us through challenges where no ‘back-up plan’ is possible.
When we find ourselves in such places we can feel apprehensive. We’re in good company. Paul confessed “We were under great pressure, far beyond our ability to endure, so that we despaired of life itself.” (2 Cor.1:8), “I had no peace of mind” (2:13) “we had no rest, but we were harassed at every turn–conflicts on the outside, fears within.” (7:5). He instructed the Philippians to “continue to work out your salvation with fear and trembling” (Phil. 2:12). Christ was in anguish as He prayed in Gethsemane (Luke 22:44). But in all these circumstances God’s reply was the same, “Now, lean back… Let Me support you.”
“He says, ‘Be still, and know that I am God’” wrote the psalmist (Ps.46:10). “Just lie back,” whispers the Spirit as He comes along beside us. “See… you’re doing it! — I’m doing it! I intend to bring us through this thing together. And He does! And we learn something more about His consistent Nature.
Paul learned this too: “Indeed, we felt we had received the sentence of death. But this happened that we might not rely on ourselves but on God, who raises the dead. He has delivered us from such a deadly peril, and he will deliver us again. On him we have set our hope that he will continue to deliver us…” (2 Cor. 1:9-10). “Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and forever.” (Heb. 13:8) We can be as confident in Christ to support us tomorrow as we have experienced Him support us today.
But of course we are not only to learn to float… we must go on to learn to swim! — More tomorrow…