Holding on in the Hard Places

I’ve been thinking again about one of my favorite Rev. Billy Graham quotes, “I believe God would have us to go hard places, not easy ones.” Scripture warns us that difficult times will come. The apostle Paul warned his young friend Timothy, “You should know this, Timothy, that in the last days there will be very difficult times.” 2 Timothy 3:1.

Sometimes the hard places are those where you feel you must stand firm in what you believe. In our society today, standing for the proposition that the Bible is the inspired, inerrant, and infallible Word of God can be a hard place. People roll their eyes or look at you like you are nuts. We know so much more now, they argue. We have the physical and social sciences that prove that the miracles of the Bible didn’t really happen. They will admit that there is some good stuff in the Bible for knowing how we should live, but because it was written by humans there are surely errors.

When I encounter this different belief in the workplace or out in the world, I’m okay with that. People are entitled to their opinions and I respect that others may believe differently than I do. Saying what I believe is not too hard of a place in these circumstances. But when the place where you must stand firm in and stand up for your belief in the inerrancy of the Bible is in your own church, it is a very hard place indeed. I have to wonder if this is really the hard place God would want me to go. But this is the hard place where I am.

The trouble is, the alternative seems just as hard a place. The alternative is to leave the church I love. I feel as though I am between the proverbial rock and a hard place, and I have to wonder if this is exactly where God wants me to be.

Recently the lyrics of the song, “Should I stay or should I go” by The Clash has periodically found a place in my head. The lyrics of the chorus are, “Should I stay or should I go now? Should I stay or should I go now? If I go there will be trouble. If I stay it will be double.” I haven’t heard that song in probably ten years, but there it is in my head.

I have been listening to another song in my car this week – Letting Go by Jeremy Camp. The lyrics of this song are how I feel right now:

Gripping on so tight with the security I have inside
Knowing what is right; holding onto my pride

Letting go of the things I hold so dear
Letting go of all my pain and all my fears
Letting go of the things I hold so dear
Letting go of all my pain and all my fears

I have been brought to a place
Where I want to give up everything
Where all I can do is seek your face
And my brokenness I will bring

Holding on to the things I deem so strong
Holding on even though my faith has been built so long
Holding on to the things I deem so strong
Holding on to what I know

I’m letting go

The apostle Paul told Timothy, “You have been taught the holy Scriptures from childhood, and they have given you the wisdom to receive the salvation that comes by trusting in Christ Jesus. All Scripture is inspired by God and is useful to teach us what is true and to make us realize what is wrong in our lives. It corrects us when we are wrong and teaches us to do what is right.” 2 Timothy 3:15-16. I believe Paul was talking to me, too. In this hard place, I need to hold onto God and to the Scriptures He has give us, and let go of everything else. I have to trust that if any of those other things are good for me, God will restore them to me.

I am a Jesus Freak, and I don't care who knows it. I am a wife, mother, sister, aunt, daughter, and friend. My blood family is only part of the larger family of Christ that I belong to. I love to write, especially about my dear Savior.


1 Response

  1. Jeremy Camp is one of my favorite artists! Did you know that he is headlining the WAY-FM “Speaking Louder Than Before” tour with Chasen, Jason Gray, and The Afters? They are also giving away a FREE Jeremy Camp download! Just click on this link http://www.givmusic.com/2009/11/free-download-from-jeremy-camp/ for the free download. You can also watch a music video, check out upcoming tour information to see if they are coming to your city, AND purchase your tickets.

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