“I do believe, but help me overcome my unbelief!” – Mark 9:24
I’ve got some sort of problem with my back these days. Very difficult to get about. Sitting around is okay. Getting into a vehicle, stooping to pick something up, even jumping out of bed all really hurt. I’ve also had “frozen shoulders” for months. So many daily activities are no longer possible or only so with pain:
- Putting on a shirt
- Tying shoes
- Getting a pair of socks on
- Bending to pull something out of the cabinet
- How about a back scratch?
I need one of those valets from Downton Abbey!
The good news here is that my shoulders are thawing and I’ve gotten some very effective medicine for my back. I’m going to live.
This all brings up the memories of the time my wife had to spend months in rehabilitation learning how to do so many simple things all over again. She was recovering from a successful brain surgery and the necessary medication left her physically powerless to move much. It was a hard struggle that she met valiantly.
In much of our lives, it can be painful to go back and learn again how to do what is essential (and often taken-for-granted). Our spiritual self needs to be in command of the ship. When it’s crippled, the rest of our being is off balance. We’ve got to learn how to walk in the Spirit again so that all the rest of our life can line up, stand straight and move freely.
Sometimes God removes our crutches so that we can learn to depend upon him with all our strength, all of our attention, all of our devotion.
Not everything is a crutch, preventing us from walking in faith. But often, people write about these aspects of their life as being a blessing and then, because of over dependence, they become crutches and impede our transformation;
- Our careers
- Wealth and income
- Even family
Learning to walk again in the Spirit often means that we have to turn loose of things we’ve hung on to for support – in place of God.
Sometimes it means we have to just loosen our grip – be ready to take His hand when offered or to pass on to someone else that treasure we once held so dear.
“So don’t worry about these things, saying, ‘What will we eat? What will we drink? What will we wear?’ These things dominate the thoughts of unbelievers, but your heavenly Father already knows all your needs. Seek the Kingdom of God above all else, and live righteously, and he will give you everything you need.”
– Matthew 6:31-33
Doesn’t that sound crazy? Don’t worry about the basic necessities of life? I’ve discovered (usually the hard way) that God knows what I need better than I do. He is also ahead, in my future, arranging the journey so that my basics are always covered. When I learn how to walk in the Spirit, I can stop paying attention to my own growling stomach and pay more attention to everyone else I meet along the way.
“The greatest lesson a soul has to learn is that God, and God alone, is enough for all its needs. This is the lesson that all God’s dealings with us are meant to teach, and this is the crowning discovery of our entire Christian life. GOD IS ENOUGH!” – Hannah Whitall Smith