“This is going to be good.” While enjoying some coffee and catching up on life’s changes, I shared with my friend about a difficult choice I had made regarding my ministry responsibilities. Though I had toiled many months in prayer, I was honest in telling her that I knew it was a move of obedience, but that I was also uncertain as to what the future would bring. Her simple words of encouragement served to shift my view from the loss I was feeling to the hope of Jesus’ presence in all things.
Sometimes in the midst of trying circumstances, we may find it easier to believe God’s promises for others more than for ourselves. It’s in those times that we most need to surround ourselves with friends who will speak truth and hope to us. While we will encounter trials where we must press on in the presence of God on our own, as David learned to do (1 Samuel 30:6), we will also face times that will require an Aaron and Hur to be right beside us in battle—giving us strength (Exodus 17:11-13).
Although God’s Word doesn’t tell us what precipitated the decision of the four friends to help their buddy (Mark 2:3), we can see from their example the qualities we’ll find in those who can stir us to “take a new grip with [our] tired hands and strengthen [our] weak knees” (Hebrews 12:12). Feeling great compassion for the sick man, these four men demonstrated:
• Fortitude in moving past any obstacle (Mark 2:4).
• Focus in getting their friend to Jesus (Mark 2:4).
• Faith in looking past the natural to the possible in God (Mark 2:5).
They saw the potential for their friend’s life to be radically different. Ultimately, though, they couldn’t make the man believe. The choice had to be his (Mark 2:12).
Who has “carried you to Jesus” in a time of need? What’s the difference between compassion and codependency?
Taken from “Our Daily Journey”