20/10/2021 by Rev Doug Walker 0 Comments
Can You Stand the Pull?
As seen in the HEARTbeat and the Village Voice
Can You Stand the Pull?
The key is to get low and wrap your arm around the rope, all the while digging in with both heels. “What in the world are you talking about,” you might ask. Well, a tug-o-war match! I can remember matches on the playground when I was young, and oddly enough in the military during some physical training sessions. When we were little, we stood up tall and pulled with just our arms, trying to get the flag completely across the line on our side. When we get older, we get a little more analytical about our technique, don’t we? When the gun sounds, we drop to the ground and dig in with both feet. Not only that, we have an anchor person who has wrapped the rope around their waist. And if we were good and worked as a team, the anchor would chant, “pull….pull” in a rhythm to get us all pulling at the same time. It’s funny, we turn what is a simplistic playground game into something with enhanced techniques and strategies!
Our lives mimic this game if we really think about it. Sometimes we feel like we’re being pulled toward a losing position. One by one those around us, those who support our efforts, begin to drop off. Without their encouragement we are left to do all the pulling on our own. And when we feel like it’s us against the world, we begin to shrink away from any and every challenge.
Jesus told His apostles they would all drink from the cup He would eventually drink from, and be baptized in the same hardships He would go through. Jesus was talking about the adversity, ridicule, and rejection He knew He would soon see. But Jesus endured because of the strength given Him from His Heavenly Father.
We have gone through a great deal over the past year and a half. We’ve been tested, and for the most part have been found to be negative for the Corona virus. But then someone close tests positive, or maybe it’s you. You’ve heard the horror stories of filled hospital beds, ventilators, and infusions. Maybe the virus has claimed the life of someone in your family, as I have. Couple all of the medical issues going on with rising inflation, gas prices, and supply chain issues. We feel as if we are standing alone tugging on a rope. But we don’t need to feel that way.
There are these groups of people who will pick up a piece of that rope and tug with you. They are called a church family. The group gets together weekly and encourages each other to pull in unison to win the tug-o-war. The larger the group, the greater power you have to stand the pull, and you can feel it in the rope. You look back and realize the anchor on the rope is Christ Himself. He tells us He will not let His church succumb to the tug of this world.
Remember, you don’t have to tug against the world on your own. The body of Christ, His church, is full of people who will help you in your struggles with prayers and encouragement as we all grow together, in Christ!