from Staci on IF:E blog this morning:
In the video, Jamie was talking about how the passage says that Jesus was tempted in all the same ways that we are, but He fought it and fought it and fought it, and He never sinned. So we can approach Jesus with confidence, knowing that He’s been there, and He understands where we’re coming from.
I have this mental image of Him coming along side of me and saying ” I’ve been in this place before, and I remember how hard it was to walk through it. I can see how you would be tempted in that way.” And as He validates my feelings and struggles, He gently steers me to the right path and encourages me to start walking. It’s not shameful. It’s not condescending. It’s not threatening or forceful. It is full of love and compassion and understanding, yet at the same time undeniably pointing the way to obedience.
I was writing about “What does this mean about the world?” when it occurred to me that that image of Jesus in response to my temptation ought to be my attitude toward the world. Not judging or preaching, but humbly drawing from my own experiences in temptation in order to understand where someone is coming from first, then softly, gently, gracefully showing the way to a better place.
Just another undisciplined overweight old woman, but if I’m serious about serving God faithfully as I age, I need to be fit. I catch myself being reminded of what I shouldn’t do, and doing it anyway, which is disobedience… I appreciate your prayers that I will be obedient and exercise the Spirit’s gift of self-control.
“In the days of his flesh, Jesus offered up prayers…to him who was able to save him from death, and he was heard because of his reverence.”
Let’s hear it for community around the Word! I don’t know if I want to write about the Scripture or about the comments that have been such a blessing and encouragement to me today.
God could have sent Jesus – the perfect and spotless Lamb and had Him die and be raised without having to go through the mess of begin a human being. I mean if you are already perfect you do not have to prove it to us. Instead Jesus came to be a model because we needed to see how it was done. He did not just hand out a bunch of words and good teaching and ask us to measure up. He jumped down in to the dark hole with us and showed us the way out.
So, from down in the darkness, Jesus prayed for help. I guess part of my problem is I sometimes don’t recognize I’m in the darkness. Case in point from Jillian’s words this morning. I know God has been speaking gently to me about getting fit and I keep thinking about it but doing nothing. I am living by flashlight instead of Sonshine and I have not even noticed! Of course I could wait for some darkness that I can’t miss – like a major health crisis but I also could just have a V-8, duh!
Jesus asked for help in being obedient from the One who was able to save him. Maybe part of my reluctance is I know my self-discipline and determination all too well. I am waiting for motivation to rise up within me because I think it is my only hope for success. Until that happens, what’s the point? Well, dodo, here’s the point: you are not the one who is able. How about that? This might be about motivation if it was your own idea but this is not your own idea. This, in fact, this is yesterday’s lesson – about responding with haste to the “His inbirthed persuadings”.
The One who could save Jesus heard him because of his reverence. Reverence? Dictionary.com says “a gesture of deep respect; an obeisance, bow or curtsy.” In other words “bend the knee”. This act of calling out and asking for help and wanting to obey but seeking the only One who can actually make it happen – it’s submission! It is not the submission that reaks from being beaten down or pinned against the wall. It is not the submission of following the rules and the Law. It is the image Staci offered this morning: “It’s not shameful. It’s not condescending. It’s not threatening or forceful. It is full of love and compassion and understanding, yet at the same time undeniably pointing the way to obedience.” It is not just letting God be God; it is bowing down and saying “You are God and I am frozen to the spot in awe.”
He is able. He is the only one who is.
Step into the great adventure of faith and obedience.
About the World:
When I act with true empathy, I act like Jesus.