People sprawled all over the place, trying to stand, only to fall again. They were laughing and having fun, but try as they could, they were unable to stay on their feet.
It was at an amusement park and they were trying to walk through a barrel-like contraption with flashing lights and whirling objects. It tilted and turned and people tumbled.
A prize was offered for anyone who was able to walk through on their feet without slipping and sliding.
One man entered the barrel boasting that he had perfect balance and could remain upright. He took only a couple of steps before he too went sprawling and sliding. At the end, embarrassed, he declared no one could possibly achieve it, called the ride a rip-off and demanded his money back.
Then the owner entered the barrel and walked straight through, proving it was possible.
How did he do it? Well, of course he couldn’t reveal his secret but it was simple. Suspended at the end of the barrel was a small shiny object. He kept his eye firmly on that object, never looking at his feet or the swirling objects or the flashing lights or the sides of the barrel.
He maintained his focus and his feet maintained their path.
Sometimes we might feel as though we are in a topsy-turvy situation.
We might find the going difficult
and be tossed around in our minds and our emotions.
We might feel at our wit’s end or as if we are being put through a wringer.
We might feel as though we are struggling against the stream and even going under.
He walked on water until he took his eyes off Jesus and saw that the wind was boisterous.
His mind possibly challenged him, “What am I doing? I can’t walk on water!!!” and he began to sink.
Just as the owner of the barrel-ride – just as Peter – we need to FOCUS.
We need to “look unto Jesus” (Hebrews 12:2)
and keep our full focus on Him.
We can walk unerringly through the roughest turmoil
when we keep our eyes firmly fixed on Jesus
and not on ourselves, our circumstances
or other people or things.
UNDER THE CIRCUMSTANCES?
UNBELIEF puts our CIRCUMSTANCES between US and GOD.
FAITH puts GOD between US and our CIRCUMSTANCES.
I especially like the last line, “Faith puts God between us and our circumstances”
That has proven to be true so many, many times.
The problem is with us: so often we wait until all is hopeless before handing everything over to the Lord and TAKING OUR HANDS OFF. When we give Him control, He steps in – problem solved! What fools we are sometimes, to try to work things out ourselves! He alone is able!
What a wonderful Saviour!
As I read this post, I thought about my circumstances. Yes, I find the going difficult, and I am tossed around in my mind and my emotions, at times! Thanks be to God, who giveth me the victory, and causeth me to triumph. Even with tears streaming down my face, I am able to keep my focus on the Lord. Otherwise, I don’t know how I would make it through these circumstances!
Paulettte, I can’t answer WHY these things happen but I know you would heartily agree with me that having the Lord makes things far, faaaaaar more tolerable. As you say, keeping your focus on Him enables you to cope.
You are an inspiration to me and to many others. Thank you. I know our great God will continue to use you to bless many.
I wasn’t surprised to see the “Peter walking on the water” example. As soon as you began to explain how the owner managed to stay upright, Peter’s example immediately came to mind. I like this analogy.
I like the analogy when I apply it to my own life.
So many times I have been/would be “barrelled” over when/if I didn’t maintain my focus – my fixed attention on Jesus.
His call comes with His enabling but it is still up to me to keep my focus on Him.
The role of faith in our service to Him cannot be overemphasized. “For without faith it is impossible to please Him” is such a true statement on so many levels. Just as you said… Faith is truly the only means to overcome the situations we face in this life. Without faith, we are like fish out of water, or better yet, we are like eagles without the wind we need to soar above the trials of life.
May the Lord continue to bless you.
John Bunyan said “Faith does the same against the devil as unbelief does against God”
John Owen said “Faith can rest in what it cannot comprehend”