How Do You Respond When You Go Overboard?
If you falter in a time of trouble,
how small is your strength!
Observation – What does it say?
This proverb seems to say that even those with a little strength won’t waver or weaken in a season where things are tough. In other words, you must not have much strength at all if you can’t handle a season of hardship. Those are some bold words. One translation puts it this way:
If you fall to pieces in a crisis,
there wasn’t much to you in the first place. (MSG)
Understanding – What does it mean?
Our faith is like a life vest. We wear it around on the boat when everything is calm and are proud of it. We study it, show it to others, and talk about it. But a life vest is only beneficial when you find yourself overboard. The unfortunate thing is that when many go overboard, the first thing they do is take off their life vest. “This thing obviously doesn’t work!” They discard the very thing that can keep their head above water, the only thing that can save them.
When Jesus’ disciples encountered the storm in Matthew 8, they freak out like it’s the end of the world. “Lord, save us! We’re going to drown!” His response was:
Matthew 8:26 “You of little faith, why are you so afraid?” Then he got up and rebuked the winds and the waves, and it was completely calm.
I don’t want Jesus to be surprised at my lack of faith. For the Christ follower, trouble and hardship should have no effect on our faith or our strength to endure. Our strength comes from God, in whom we have put our trust. Jesus said:
John 16:33 "I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world."
Going through a time of trouble? This isn’t the time to crumble. Instead, hold tightly to your faith and draw strength from God!
God, I pray for all my brothers and sisters who are facing difficulty and challenging situations. Be their strength. Be their peace. When we find ourselves overboard, may we cling to our faith in you and trust in you. Amen.