A little red-headed, blue-eyed toddler lived next to a railroad track. The narrow road which separated his two bedroom house from the passing locomotives got a workout everyday with his little tricycle. It was a daily ritual for him to wait until he could see the train, then race fast as he could to see who could get to the two black creosote posts, 100 yards down that shell road.
In his little heart he wondered what it would be like to touch that train. One day, instead of racing the train, he rode his tricycle toward it. About 10 yards from the tracks, he started walking toward the moving locomotive with his innocent hand stretching out as far as he could reach. The noise made him oblivious to the screams of his mother, warning, pleading for him to stop.
Just as my hand was about to touch those tons of moving steel, my mother’s arms swept me away to safety. She saved me from certain death that day.
GospeLines Prayer:Father, sometimes evil is camouflaged in ways that seems enticing and intriguing. I can’t always know when something is good or bad. When my wisdom fails me, O Lord, I beseech you to whisk me away from dangerous situations and pull me to the comfort of your bosom. Amen and amen.
Peter declared, “Even if everyone else deserts You, I will never desert You.”Jesus replied, “I tell you the truth, Peter - this very night, before the rooster crows, you will deny three times that you even know Me.”
“No!” Peter insisted. “Even if I have to die with You, I will never deny You!” And all the other disciples vowed the same.
Then Jesus went with them to the olive grove called Gethsemane, and He said, “Sit here while I go over there to pray.”He took Peter and Zebedee’s two sons, James and John, and He became anguished and distressed.He told them, “My soul is crushed with grief to the point of death. Stay here and keep watch with Me.” (Matthew 26:33-38 - NLT)
When I read this passage about Jesus’ betrayal, it was His humanness that captured my attention… ”My soul is crushed with grief…,” He declares. Despite knowing that Peter would betray Him and that His death was imminent, He could pray and readily admit that He felt vulnerable and sad. Imagine that?
We often pretend that all is well with the world and as we attempt to find our own personal escape hatch; God still knows the truth. I can put on any number of disguises, but God knows me better than I know myself.
Even when I don’t articulate my precise feelings… He knows my sense of abandonment in several significant relationships during my lifetime. The pain of knowing that someone can’t take care of you, wishes you hadn’t been born or doesn’t or can’t love you is excruciating. It never completely escapes your mind or your heart even when you bury it as far away as possible.
Each time you open yourself to new relationships and possibilities; you expose yourself and take risks. And, the optimist holds out hope that things will be different. You long for that someone who will love you for you and that they will be your fiercest protector and ally, sheltering you from external forces – “you and me against the world!”
But, alas, each time you risk it, you hold on to a little bit more of your heart… because there are no more tears left to shed and your hope is fleeting…
GospeLines Prayer: Father, you know I have a hole in my heart. I admit that fact when I’m in the dark corners of my mind… alone. You’ve heard my pleas and just like Your Son, I am vulnerable and sad. Imagine that?
But, it’s YOU and me against the world, Father. When I have nowhere else to turn and I have reached the point of physical and mental exhaustion, You remind me that You are with me… today, tomorrow and every day.
You do love me despite how I could be viewed - As Aurelia told Jenny in Joyce Meyer’s new book “The Penny” - “I think you’re the only one around here trying to keep people from seeing who you really are. You’re the only person around who thinks you aren’t worth much.”
Thank You for listening whenever I need to talk and for validating me as someone worth loving.
Have you ever wanted someone's friendship only to have them tell you they were not your friend?Have you ever wanted to help someone who didn't want your help?Have you ever tried to find words to say to someone who is hurting only to have them tell you to go away?If not, I'm truly glad, because it really hurts...
Have you ever loved someone who didn't love you?Have you ever sacrificed for someone only to have them turn against you and curse you?Have you ever been betrayed by someone who said they were your friend?If not, you're truly blessed because it really hurts...
Have you ever saved someone from harm only to have them reject you?Have you ever given someone everything they ask of you only to have them turn their backs on you when you have a need?Have you ever given your life for someone who didn't even know you?If not, be thankful, because it really hurts...
Jesus prayed, "...let the world know that You sent Me and have loved them even as You have loved Me... You loved Me before the creation of the world. (John 17:23-25)"Greater love has no one than this, that he lay down his life for his friends." (John 15:13)"While we were still sinners, Christ died for us." (Romans 5:8)Jesus loved us first and sacrificed everything so we could have the free gifts of righteousness: peace and joy in the Holy Spirit, and, most of all, salvation.Have you accepted those gifts with thankfulness and gratitude?Or, do you cherish the things of this world above His free gifts?Have you refused to obey all of His commands?Do you rationalize His Word to fit society's current views?I hope not because… it really hurts...