Sometimes we all need a break from things going on in our world and our own life. How do you take that break? For me, one thing I used to do was to sit down with a cup of coffee and just enjoy it!! Well...not so much right now. I will again but, for a few weeks, I have decided to take a break from coffee. Crazy you say...YES!!!! Today is Saturday and normally I would be having a nice hot cup right now but because of a challenge...to myself and to friends...I am not. This is my twelfth day with five weeks to go. Reminds me of the T.V. show Survivor!! The first few days were really hard...lack of caffeine causes extreme tiredness...but now it's getting easier and I am sure that I will make it to the end of the journey. There's another journey that I am on that reminds me of another show I like to watch...The Amazing Race!!
HEBREWS 12:1-3 (New Century Version)
We are surrounded by a great cloud of people whose lives tell us what faith means. So let us run the race that is before us and never give up. We should remove from our lives anything that would get in the way and the sin that so easily holds us back. Let us look only to Jesus, the One who began our faith and who makes it perfect. He suffered death on the cross. But he accepted the shame as if it were nothing because of the joy that God put before him. And now he is sitting at the right side of God's throne. Think about Jesus' example. He held on while wicked people were doing evil things to him. So do not get tired and stop trying.
In the show they travel to a lot of different places in the world. Then they have to perform tasks which are sometimes difficult...and sometimes terrifying! At least that's how I categorize things like bungee jumping and rappelling down cliffs! After all of that...and doing the best you possibly can...the last team to arrive at the check in point is usually eliminated. Can you imagine, after doing your best...elimination!! In the race talked about in Hebrews we don't have to worry about being eliminated as long as we do what that verse says. Just reread that verse right now. Nothing I write could say it any better than it is said already. Think about it...
While we are in this race who should we look to? JESUS!!! He suffered for us in ways that we can't even imagine. His body was literally shredded for us! Then...after all the pain and suffering He endured in the hours right before His death...He opened His arms one last time and accepted His fate. The soldiers placed Jesus on the cross and nailed His hands down so that His arms were held open wide for all of the world to see His amazing love for us.
I don't know what you think of when you see Jesus on the cross. I think of many things...I feel many things. One is sadness for all the pain He endured for us...you and me. Another is gratefulness that He died for me so that I could live. Another is love. What amazing love He has for each and everyone of us. Something else that I think of is what Jesus' arms, stretched wide, represents to me. In all honesty, until just now, I never thought of this before. I believe He is just saying...Come to Me. Step into My embrace. My arms are opened wide for you. I will close them around you and hold you close forever if you will just let Me. All the fear, all the hurt, all the pain...it will all be okay if you just let Me hold you...wrap My arms around you!
At least for me...this is what JESUS is saying in this moment...
Don't get tired and don't stop trying...No matter what!! In the end it will all be worth it...My arms wrapped around you welcoming you in to My eternal embrace!!
What is He saying to you?