Sunday, August 28, 2011

Hope and the ultimate freebie

This update is a bit different than the ones I have written in the last week, but one I feel I need to write. Yesterday an old friend of mine decided to take his own life and it has hit me very hard because of some of the conversations I was able to have with him at least ten years ago. He was looking for hope all those years back and I just feel he was still looking for hope until yesterday when he decided he didn't have anymore. It makes my heart hurt, I hurt for his family, I hurt for his kids, and I hurt for him in those final moments. I just can't imagine having no hope or feeling so very very alone. Unable to sleep last night I thought a lot about my hope and where it comes from so this morning I felt I had to read one of my favorite passages in the Bible Psalms 139:1-18

"O Lord, you have examined my heart and know everything about me.
You know when I sit down or stand up, you know my every thought when far away.
You chart the path ahead of me and tell me where to stop and rest. Every moment you know where I am.
You know what I am going to say even before I say it, Lord.
You both precede and follow me. You place your hand of blessing on my head.
Such knowledge is too wonderful for me, too great for me to know!
I can never escape from your spirit! I can never get away from your presence!
If I go up to heaven, you are there; if I go down to the place of the dead, you are there.
If I ride the wings of the morning, if I dwell by the farthest oceans,
even there your hand will guide me, and your strength will support me.
I could ask the darkness to hide me and the light around me to become night-
but even in darkness I cannot hide from you. To you the night shines as bright as day. Darkness and light are both alike to you.
You made all the delicate, inner parts of my body and knit me together in my mother's womb.
Thank you for making me so wonderfully complex! Your workmanship is marvelous- and how well I know it.
You watched me as I was being formed in utter seclusion, as I was woven together in the dark of the womb.
You saw me before I was born. Every day of my life was recorded in your book. Every moment was laid out before a single day had passed.
How precious are your thoughts about me, O God! They are innumerable!
I can't even count them; they outnumber the grains of sand, And when I wake up in the morning you are still with me."

And this is when I understood why I am able to have hope- why I don't feel alone. I've been given the ultimate freebie ever a relationship with Jesus Christ. This wasn't something I deserved, it doesn't make me better than anyone, it shows that I am a SINNER (All have sinned and fall short of the glory of God Romans 3:23) But the same God who loved me in these verses in Psalms is the same God that sent His son to earth to die on a cross for all the ugly things I have done. (For God so loved the world, that He gave his one and only son that whoever believes in Him will not parish but have everlasting life. John 3 16) All I had to do was "sign up" so to speak in my freebies terminology - admit my sin and admit my need for a savior without Christ I am nothing. (For by grace you are saved through faith and that not of yourselves it is a gift from God not of works so that no one can boast Eph 2:8-9) . The Christian life isn't easy it's hard, and it doesn't make you rich, or healthy. But when you are poor you can see God's hand and when you are sick you can see God's hand and when you are alone.....and when you feel alone...... You know that God is watching over you, God is walking with you, He's been there with you since you were in your momma's tummy how amazing is that. And He CARES about us, no matter how messed up we are. But He's not a God who is going to push and shove His way in, nope He is polite and stands and the door of your heart and knocks. He gives me hope in the hard time, and He gives me hope of a future. And no matter how many good freebies come in the mail nothing can beat that. I just wish that my friend would have seen this, I pray that God's peace will be on his family and his kids as they deal with this loss.

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