Let Go of the Rope
Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who according to His abundant mercy has begotten us again to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead,to an inheritance incorruptible and undefiled and that does not fade away, reserved in heaven for you, who are kept by the power of God through faith for salvation ready to be revealed in the last time. In this you greatly rejoice, though now for a little while, if need be, you have been grieved by various trials… 1 Peter 1:3-6
In Peter’s letter to the field, he is essentially telling the missionaries to relax, let go, and lighten up. Ironically the secular world also prescribes the same thing, but their position is a twisted one, for it offers no hope—they merely advocate relaxation for relaxation’s sake, after all (they would say), “You do deserve a break today!”
The passage reminds us that we can rest in the knowledge (that) our Jesus is alive, our eternal inheritance waits, and we are preserved by the power of God through faith. When we endeavor to keep these truths in the forefront and our focus upon our risen Savior, celebration of all things and in all things comes naturally.
Let’s face it; most of what we worry about never comes to pass anyway. I experienced that last week when I was actually worried about meeting my Compassion sponsored child, Allison Juan. “What will I say…what is he’s shy…what if he’s bored…” I fussed. None of that ever came to fruition and my distress proved to be unwarranted.
Pastor Jon Courson tells a story of a fraternity prank that left a young man hanging–literally. The fraternity to which the lad was pledging took him to a well and lowered him into the dark abyss on a greased rope. He was instructed to hang on until his ‘brothers’ lifted him out. Of course you know that they left him there.
So there he hung in the dark, unable to climb the greasy cord. After several moments his arms began to throb and he feared if he lost his grip he would plunge to the water far below. More time past and he began to shout for help and then succumb to tears knowing he was going to fall. Finally, the boy loosing his grip plummeted to the bottom of the cistern…a full 12 inches below his feet. Standing firm on the bottom of the dry well all he could do was laugh at the inanity of his behavior.
Paul Was Right
“If Christ is not risen, your faith is futile; you are still in your sins! Then also those who have fallen asleep in Christ have perished. If in this life only we have hope in Christ, we are of all men the most pitiable.” 1 Corinthians 15:17-19
But what Christ Jesus did on the cross is not a charade, nor is His resurrection a hoax perpetrated by deceived followers. Christ did die, Christ has risen, and Christ will come again.
There is no doubt that trials will hound us, but hope and joy comes in knowing that our future glory in Him is secure. Given a choice, which airline would you fly: the one that promises a turbulent journey with a smooth landing, or the one the promises a smooth flight with a crash landing. We ALL can endure the turbulence when we know we are going to touch-down safely.