As seen in the  "The Heartbeat" and published in the Hot Springs Village Voice



            Oh, to have the strength of our younger years!  What we couldn’t do now!!  I can remember in my college years (a very long time ago), I was pretty stout.  One Spring semester was over and so was the weight program at the university.  It was a good time to be home for the upcoming summer, see friends, and enjoying time with my parents.

            A friend of mine has just purchased the first king cab Nissan truck in Arkansas.  It was a novelty as the year before the company was called Datsun.  All the guys had half-ton trucks, so we made fun of the “pint-sized” Nissan.  To make matters even worse, I told my friend I could pick up the back of his truck with my bare hands.  The challenge was on!  I turned my back to the rear bumper, squatted and grabbed it with the best grip I had, and literally lifted the tires off the ground (barely).  They were all astonished, but none more than me.  Even though I was extremely strong from the Spring weight program, I had no idea the challenge made by my friend could be met.  There would have been no way I could have done what I did that Saturday afternoon without the preparation, which was of course the source of my strength.  Many years have gone by and I am a lot wiser, and now use car jacks to lift tires off the ground!  The same task is completed, but my strength comes from a different source.

            Many times as Christians we are asked, “What is the source of your strength?”  The Sunday School answer is “Jesus!” but are we being completely honest?  How much of the strength in our daily lives can be attributed to our Savior, and how much do we try on our own?  I think we would all agree we do not rely totally on the strength available to us from Heaven.

            Some might argue, “The retirement check I receive every month isn’t from God,” or “my income comes from the company I work for.”  On the surface this might be true, but who gave us the talents and stamina to work so hard for many years so as to have a retirement check?  Have you ever been hired somewhere and just thought it was such a blessing?  I have to say, you are right!!

            While we cannot directly attribute all the blessings in our lives coming directly from God, we must look further.  God uses others to extend blessings to us.  When He told the people through the prophet Malachi that He would open the windows of Heaven and pour out blessings, He certainly didn’t tell us the paths those blessings would take before eventually arriving to us!

            The more we deny our own strength and rely on God’s, the more strength and blessings we will receive in our lives.  God may be giving bountifully to you so you can bless others!  Pay it forward?  No, I say, bless is forward.  Be a blessing of strength to someone this week!

  Mountainside Church · 301 Elcano Drive
Hot Springs Village · AR 71909

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