Could you use some encouragement today?
I know I could. Sometimes my heart grows anxious. It’s easy to give way to fear, to let the “what if’s” take over. To look at our nation, our world, and feel as if things are spiraling out of control.
Yet, in the midst of turbulent times and an uncertain future, the words of the old hymn ring true in my heart – “When all around my soul gives way, He then is all my hope and stay. On Christ the Solid Rock I stand…” *
This Rock that is Jesus – He is secure and unchanging, a foundation that will never crumble. His love is everlasting. His truth still brings freedom. His justice is as sure as the rising sun. His faithfulness will never, ever cease. Come what may, God is good. God is with us. And God will complete His work in us.
This week I’ve been studying in Colossians. My heart thrills at the work of God on our behalf. Here are some highlights from chapter two:
- God has revealed to us the mystery of Christ (v 2). Walking with God has always been by faith – from the opening chapters of Genesis (the promise of One who would crush the serpent), to the final words of Revelation (“come quickly, Lord Jesus!”). Yet the Object of our faith was a mystery until God made Him known. Oh, the riches of assurance and knowledge of Him!
- God has firmly rooted us in Christ (v 7). It’s done, once and for all – by God, for us. Because we are rooted in Him, we can face the future with confidence. Nothing can uproot us from Christ!
- God is building us up and establishing us in our faith (v 7). God is continuously, repeatedly working to strengthen us.
- God has made us complete (v 10). As the fullness of God dwells in the Person of Christ, so we are completely filled with Christ. We lack nothing when we have Jesus.
- God has circumcised our hearts (v 11). In Old Testament times, God commanded Israel to circumcise their hearts (Jer 4:4), but they were incapable of doing it themselves. However, He promised that one day, He Himself would complete this work. (“Then the Lord your God will circumcise your hearts and the hearts of your descendants, so that you may love Him…” Deut 30:6.) And now He has done it! (“Your whole self ruled by the flesh was put off when you were circumcised by Christ” (Col 2:11b). What we are powerless to do on our own, God has done for us. The power of our old life is broken!
- God has cancelled our certificate of condemnation, nailing it to the cross (v 14). All those sins that separated us from God, which served as evidence of our guilt – they are all gone! Not a single sin stands to condemn us. We are fully forgiven in Christ.
- God brings about our spiritual growth (v 19). Fruit-bearing is God’s work (thus the term “fruit of the Spirit”). For most of my life, I believed I had to try hard to produce fruit as a Christian. In reality, I’m just the branch displaying the fruit made by the Vine as I abide in Him (Jn 15:1-11)!
My dear fellow Jesus-lover – be encouraged! Rest in hope. Speak truth to your soul.
Nothing can sever us from the God who works on our behalf – no politician, no tragedy, no loss, no disappointment. If He has done all this for us (and ever so much more), will He not continue to show Himself strong on our behalf? We He not daily support, strengthen, sustain, and supply?
May we overflow with gratitude, walk closely with Him, and keep our eyes fixed on Jesus.
“For the eyes of the Lord move to and fro throughout the earth that He may strongly support those whose heart is completely His…” 2 Chron 16:9a.
“I will make an everlasting covenant with them: I will never stop doing good to them…I will rejoice in doing them good…” Jer 32:40-41.
What kind of soul-talk brings peace to your heart? Is there a particular attribute of God that especially gives you hope?
*The Solid Rock, by Edward Mote