Friday, 17 September 2010

Everlasting Arms of Grace

Max Lucado tells the story, in his upcoming book (Outlive Your Life), of the time when his 3 year old nephew came over and saw his basketball hoop. He asked uncle Max if they could "play basketball". Max lowered the hoop from 10 feet down to 7 feet, taught his nephew how to throw a "Granny" style, but still nothing enabled his nephew to score. Uncle Max then lifted his struggling nephew up to the ring where the 3 year old was able to roll the ball through the hoop. With this he gave a double fist pump and began yelling- "I did it! I did it all by myself I did it!"
The eternal God is your dwelling place,
and underneath are the everlasting arms.
And he thrust out the enemy before you... 
Deuteronomy 33:27
Walls of Jerusalem hike in the highlands of TasmaniaIn Deuteronomy 33:27 it says that God's "everlasting arms" are under His people. Perhaps in much the same way that Uncle Max helped his nephew to score an impossible goal, so God helps us to do the impossible with much the same response by us as Uncle Max's nephew.
But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly of my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may rest upon me.
2Corinthians 12:9
This is what we call grace. When God enables us to do what we usually take for granted, it is an act of divine grace, but how many of us recognise it? Underneath us each are the Everlasting arms of God enabling us to score a goal. Sometimes these goals look like the car we drive, the house we live in, the clothes we wear, the job we perform, the family we have, the church we are a part of, and accounts we keep with banks. God's Everlating arms of grace take on various forms.
Like the little nephew, we kid ourselves and try to kid those around us that we know how to score life-goals. But alas, we are often like the tick which got into the elephant's ear, Max Lucado goes on to say, that caused the elephant to burst from the herd and head to the nearest river. As the raging elephant made it to the river is crossed a rickety old wooden bridge which struggled under the immense weight of the elephant. The bridge bounced wildly as the stampeding elephant stormed across it. Once on the other side of the bridge the tick yelled out to any who would care to listen- "Look what we just did to that bridge!"
Walls of Jerusalem walk in Tasmania near Trappers Hut
Walls of Jerusalem scenery in Tasmania
I've been that tick too many times! Amazingly, even Jesus said that He could do nothing without the help of his Father! (John 5:19) Therefore, who do I think I am? I need to understand that underneath me are the Everlasting arms of God's grace.
“I can do nothing on my own."
John 5:30a
Got an impossible task that you're faced with? Perhaps you need to feel the loving arms of an Everlasting God lift you up to the level of overcoming whatever it is you are confronted with.
Lord Jesus, lift me up with Your Everlasting arms. Give me the strength, wisdom, and insight needed to be able to glorify you in all I face. Please lift our church up. Fill every person at Legana Christian Church with a deepening love for You, Your people, and Your House. Help us to be able to score the goals of people coming to know and follow Christ. We confess to You our reluctance to say sorry for those destructive acts of pride and its declarations. We ask for Your forgiveness. Now Lord I pray, grant that we will not look to our selves to answer or solve all of our problems - but that we might continually invite you to hoist us up and that we might each time go some of the way to thank You for it.
Ps. Andrew

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