Welcome to Heartsprings, where I share what springs forth from my heart for God and His people. I pray that what you find here blesses you and draws you nearer to your Heavenly Father who loves you like no other.

In His love,
Brenda :-)

Thursday, April 23, 2015

Blindly Following a Crutch

We don't follow blindly and Christ is not a crutch.  Not in the derogatory sense, anyway.  Those who don't believe in Jesus often accuse those of us who do believe of being blind followers.  I hear "Christianity is a crutch" all the time.  If only they knew the truth.

What some perceive as blind following comes as a result of wrestling with God over what we want as opposed to what He wants, and learning that what He wants for us is better - oftentimes the hard way.  God will allow us to have our way.  We are not robots.  It only takes a time or two, however, of having our way and falling flat on our faces to realize that maybe Father does know best.  Humans are prideful and stubborn, and Christians are not immune to those human traits just because they try to be.  Even the most obedient among us still ask, "why" and "how".  Then we remember that He always provides a way and that even if we don't see the reason, He always has a good one.  We've learned this from experience.  We've learned this from being honest with ourselves and with God about our imperfections and weaknesses - and wanting to grow and improve.  We've learned this from being stubborn, prideful children of God and failing at accomplishing what we thought we wanted over and over.  Some of us do it over and over more than others, but we all learn differently.  The point is, oftentimes the ones who seem to follow the most blindly are the ones with their eyes widest open.  They've learned the hardest lessons, and they know God the best.  They are the wisest among us.

As for Christ being a crutch . . . well, that coin has two sides.  On the first side, we are sinners in need of a Savior; weak and crippled and in need of a crutch until we're strong enough to walk.  Even then, there will be plenty of times in our lives when we will need to be carried or at the very least, have a crutch.  No one is at the peak of strength for their entire lives.  We all have weak moments.  We all get injured.  It's part of being human.  That's just how it is.  We're born prone to weakness and injury.  There is no better help anywhere than Jesus Christ.  He is the strongest, smartest, and most gentle physician there is.  He is a counselor, comforter, ever-present help in time of trouble.  And He knows all.  There's no one better to help you in a moment of weakness or pain.  The other side of the coin is that being a Christian is hard!  Most people won't tell you that, but it is.  It's messy, painful, and sometimes just downright frustrating.  We get dirty, we get hurt, we even want to walk away sometimes because this is just too darn hard.  Thank God for the first side of the coin!  Jesus knows how hard it is to follow Him sometimes and He sends a Helper in the form of The Holy Spirit.  Being a Christian is a constant battle between our flesh and God's Spirit within us.  God wants to perfect us, and our flesh wants to be totally human and indulge in whatever we want to indulge in whether it's bad for us or not.  Our flesh is a spoiled little brat and God's Spirit within us is the parent wanting us to grow up to be a well-rounded, healthy adult.  The two butt heads, naturally.  The interesting thing is that even when it's hard and frustrating, there can be peace.  There's a peace that comes with the "Christian package" that we can tap into anytime we want.  The Bible calls it "peace that passes all understanding" and it does.  I can't tell you how many times I have been baffled by the inner peace I have had in the midst of turmoil.  It's not what I should be feeling and yet it's there.  It's trippy!

I am a Christian and I am far from perfect.  I do not follow blindly.  I follow with absolute faith because I know that my God is beyond trustworthy and has only my best interest at heart.  I, on the other hand, am more self-destructive than anything and far from trustworthy.  I don't want to follow me.  I'll get totally lost.  Christ is not my crutch unless I ask Him to be and I need to ask Him to be much more than I do because I am crippled without Him.  I breathe in and out every day only because He allows me to.  I have an amazing husband, wonderful gifts and talents that I enjoy and can share with others, and a love for others that can't be explained only because He gave me those things.  He created me.  He wakes me up every morning.  He waits for me to take His hand and follow Him into the grand adventure that He has for me every day.  Some days I take His hand and some days I forget to.  That's okay.  He still loves me and He still waits for me.  Whenever I'm ready to stop following my own foolish ways, I can take His hand again; feel His amazing love for me, and continue on our grand adventure.  And let me tell you, it is a grand adventure.  There's action, adventure, drama, and romance . . . everything we look for in a good movie except it's real life.  It's not always easy and sometimes there's more joy than I can contain.  I've always said that parenting is the greatest pain and the greatest joy we can experience in this life.  Well, I can say the same thing about being a Christian.  What we have to decide is whether or not the joy is worth the pain.  For me, I have decided that it is.  Not to mention the fact that eternity depends on it.  I could not imagine spending eternity apart from my Jesus.  The one who picked me up, brushed me off, and loves me in spite of myself.  He wants to make my life here on earth and my eternity better than it could be without Him.  There is a learning curve, without a doubt, but what thing worth doing doesn't require some sacrifice?  Jesus gave the ultimate sacrifice - His life - for me and for everyone who chooses to accept His sacrifice and make a few of their own for the sake of deep purpose here on earth and eternity in heaven.

Following blindly requires very little of a person.  Following Jesus requires much more than most people think.  It requires faith and fortitude, and more strength than we can muster on our own.  It's a partnership between God and man.  It's fellowship and friendship with a greater purpose.  Christianity is not a crutch, it's a way of life - my life by choice.  No blindness involved.