“Others of us have written our own Bible verse: ‘God helps those who help themselves’ (Popular Opinion 1:1). We’ll fix ourselves, thank you. We’ll make up for our mistakes with contributions, our guilt with busyness.”- Max Lucado
“Just as Moses lifted up the snake in the wilderness, so the Son of Man must be lifted up, that everyone who believes may have eternal life in him.”- John 3:14-15 (NIV)
In Chapter 8 (“Believe and Receive”) of 3:16 – The Numbers of Hope, Max Lucado talks about the time persuasive friends — and stupid pride — resulted in his presence atop a fifty-foot cliff. To go rappelling. Wearing a belay harness, plus a what-did-I-get-myself-into expression.
The bubbly, college-aged young lady assisting Max told him to just trust her. She also told Max that she would keep him from crashing. Because she held the rope. The only thing Max needed to do? Trust the young lady holding the rope.
In a similar way, Pastor Lucado observes, Jesus’ invitation in John 3:16 seems simplistic. As a result, we gravitate to other verbs like work or satisfy. However, with salvation, God works and we trust. Max explains:
“Christ, in contrast, says to us what the rope-holding girl said to me: ‘Your part is to trust. Trust me to do what you can’t.’ Bu the way, you take similar steps of trust daily, even hourly. You believe the chair will support you, so you set your weight on it. . . . believe water will hydrate you, so you swallow it.
You regularly trust power you cannot see to do a work you cannot accomplish. Jesus invites you to do the same with him. Just him. . . . Not even you. You can’t fix you. Look to Jesus . . . and believe.”
In conclusion, Max reminds us, his rappelling partner told him to fix his gaze upon her. So as Max took the plunge, she told him to keep his eyes looking up at her. She did her work and Max landed safely. Next trip, though, Max plans to sit in a chair on the porch.
Today’s question: When do you tend to recite Popular Opinion 1:1? Please share.
Tomorrow’s blog: “Flying a jet without a parachute”