Many years ago, Sue and I (we only had Stephen and Melissa with us at the time) moved to Singapore to serve with a mission agency. The moment we landed, we encountered one obstacle after another. The biggest of them all was getting a longer-term visa for Sue and the kids who had to renew their visas monthly!
I was determined to fix this problem. To cut the long story short, I found a solution, or so I thought.
Have you ever been in situations like this where you think you’ve got things all figured out and under control that you just went full speed ahead? This was me. Oh, I did pray but it was token because I told myself, “I’ve got this in the bag”.
Well, my strategy didn’t work. It came to a dead end. I was back to square one. I was devastated. I had reached the end of my rope. I did not know what to do.
When we don’t know what to do, we actually do know what to do and that is we throw ourselves at the feet of our Heavenly Father, acknowledging afresh our need of him and our reliance on him. However, that was not the lesson I learnt.
You see, ‘at that hour’, it was relatively easy for me to turn to God because there was nothing else I could do but the dependence God was cultivating in me that day was one that is not based on my circumstances. In other words, I don’t turn to God only when I have run out of options, power, strength and wisdom, which is what I had been do and still doing. I don’t turn to God only because I think it will get me what I want, the very charge Satan made against Job, “Does Job fear God for nothing?”. This is another thing I was and am still guilty of.
What I needed to see and still need to see is my dependence on God is first and foremost because of who He is and who I am. God is God and I am not! He is uncreated, whereas I am created. As Sue McPherson wrote last week, we cannot save ourselves and I’m not just talking about our salvation!
We don’t just need God ‘at that hour’ but we need Him every hour, words taken from one of my favourite hymns written in 1872. “I need Thee every hour, Most gracious Lord; No tender voice like Thine, Can Peace afford…I need Thee every hour, In joy or pain; Come quickly and abide, Or life is vain”. The chorus goes like this, “I need Thee, oh I need Thee; Every hour I need Thee; Oh, bless me now, my Savior (sic), I come to Thee”.
Keller says it like this (from his book, Walking with God through pain and suffering), “I always knew, in principle, that ‘Jesus is all you need’ to get through. But you don’t really know Jesus is all you need until Jesus is all you have”.
‘Lord, grow our faith in you!’