"Let us hold unswervingly to the hope we profess, for he who promised is faithful." (Hebrews 10:23)
I had been speaking at a retreat for a couple of days. As the retreat was drawing to an end, this sweet lady found the courage to ask a hard question in the midst of sharing her heart. She was ready to take her next step in her journey with Jesus and she was desperately seeking real answers.
I could see tears streaming down her face. I could feel the heaviness of her brokenness and the aching of her heart. Life had been hard and it appeared to only be getting harder. I just sat there and listened as she shared her heart. Then her question came, as I knew it would, “I don’t know what to do with all the brokenness that keeps pilling up. What do I do with all of this?” It was one of those moments where I find myself at a loss for words because I don’t want to just give a well-intended answer that has the potential to sound like a cliche. To be honest, in moments like that, even if I wanted to give a well-intended, make you feel good answer, I don’t usually have it to give.
I often find myself asking God to give me the words needed to respond. And then, there are moments like this particular one where I find myself desperately pleading with Him to give me the words. Moments when the only words you have are His words…God’s Word. And it's a good thing that is all we got because truth is that nothing else will do. I know nothing else will do because I’ve had some of those moments myself.
I’ve had plenty of my own moments where I’ve had to wrestle with my brokenness and work through the heartaches brokenness usually brings. I’ve had moments where I have asked some of the same questions this sweet lady was asking me, “What do I do with this? It hurts too much, Lord! It’s too heavy, Lord. What do I do with this?” In those moments of asking hard questions, the only answer that works and brings comfort to me is not the well-intended cliche or perfectly crafted words. In those moments I have found that only Jesus and His Word will do.
So that is what I gave her- Jesus! As I held her close and wiped the tears streaming on both of our faces, I said, “Well, the only thing I know to do in moments like this is hold on to Jesus and the unswerving hope we find in His promises…in His Word. The only thing I know to do is to keep calling on His name because one of the beautiful things about Jesus is that when we don’t know what to say or do, His name is always enough. And if we have to keep calling on His name minute by minute, even second by second until we can catch our breath, that is what we do. Because He Who promised, Jesus, has been, is, and forever will be faithful. and I prayed one of my all time favorite Bible verses over her, Hebrews 10:23 as together we called on His name to sustain her…to sustain us.
Hebrews 10:23 was one of the very first verses I fell in love with when I first gave my life to Jesus. Over the years, I have found myself praying that verse out loud as well as gently whispering it to my heart while catching my breath. In the moments when brokenness comes my way and I can’t see clear through the blurriness of my own tears or I can’t seem to be able to see past the fog right in front of me, I take that verse in and hold fast to its promise as I lay my brokenness and aching heart at the feet of Jesus.
Throughout the years, I have stood on both sides of Hebrews 10:23 many times. I have stood in the sweet victory of His faithfulness and I have held tight to the hope it gives as I’ve walked through the valleys. And here is what I have found to be true, it has held true on both ends, the mountain tops and the valleys alike…because that is what God's Word does. It holds true regardless of time and seasons.
Sweet friend, If you find yourself asking some of the hard questions right now, please let me encourage you here. There is a difference between feeling helpless and being hopeless. We must remember that hope is always available because Jesus is always available. My prayer for us is that we would be people that keep holding on to the hope we profess by holding on to Jesus knowing that He Who promised is faithful!