But we have this treasure in jars of clay to show that this all-surpassing power is from God and not from us. We are hard pressed on every side, but not crushed; perplexed, but not in despair; persecuted, but not abandoned; struck down, but not destroyed.(2 Corinthians 4:7-9)
To which would you compare yourself? Are you kind of like an over-inflated balloon? Does the slightest pinprick cause you to burst? Or when your knot comes unraveled, do you fly this way and that until all the air is spent and you hang limp, unable to move? Are you similar to a fluorescent light bulb? Will a rap against a hard object cause you to fracture into a million tiny shards? Or maybe you’re more like a rubber playground ball, always feeling kicked around and sometimes feeling a little too squishy. Maybe it’s like a weight is attached to your foot and you’re being pulled deeper and deeper and the ringing in your ears gets louder and louder. We’re all under pressure, aren’t we? How do you handle yours?
By ourselves, we’re pretty fragile. The problems of life are usually not so considerate as to come at us one at a time. The word “bombarded” would fit rather well sometimes, wouldn’t it? Temptation pricks at our thin exterior. We are pulled in all sorts of directions by the schedule that so often dictates our lives. Tragedy and trouble shatter the peace that we want so dearly to maintain. People kick us around and criticize our ideals and decisions. Sometimes the pressure feels so great that we think we’re going to implode. The additional pressures of serving God and his people just add to all those other things.
But don’t you think God recognizes all this? By ourselves, we are fragile. But with the Lord, we’re firm. When we hear or study his Word, there’s something solid that grows underneath our delicate exterior. The Holy Spirit does his work of giving us faith and strengthening us in that faith to resist everything that the devil and the world can throw at us. And you know what it is that’s so solid, don’t you? The Bible proclaims a certainty that we just can’t find in ourselves. The good news that Jesus lived perfectly and died in our place and forgave us all our sins is not something squishy or fragile. It’s real. It’s one hundred percent done. It’s yours to rejoice in. It’s the solid foundation on which you and I stand.
Prayer: Lord Jesus, my Savior, thank you for giving me something I can count on. Thank you for being what I could never be and doing what I could never do. Thank you for giving me forgiveness and heaven. When the pressures of life remind me how fragile I am, help me to trust only in you. Even in all the problems of life, help me remember that you will keep me safe in your most capable hands. Amen.