Faith or Bootstraps
A person’s life is going downhill. Wrong decision follows wrong decision. Family is about to give up. Many friends already have. A soul is detached from all sources of help. Life has taken on a whole new meaning. There is one goal at the top of their list. Whether it is financial, social, or simply existence, the rest of the world has fallen to a distant second place.
The world would simply say, “They need to just pull themselves up by their bootstraps. Change their ways. Get their act together.” And the world leaves the remedy to those too quickly thought out words. Their help has ended.
But there is no change. The one clawing their way up financially has only one goal in mind: More. The one seeking a higher level of self esteem through the use of drugs is in a world where only one person exists. And the one with a bankrupt social life is at the edge of desperation.
A verse in the Bible that brings all of man’s needs into focus is Romans 5:8 “But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.”
It’s not just a little bit more money that is the answer, nor finding that perfect way to acceptance from peers, nor that perfect high that has no low at the end. The only answer is to understand and take to heart the Truth from God’s Word that describes the need within all mankind as forgiveness from a sin nature.
Every person on earth is searching. They are searching for that one thing that will bring lasting happiness. Though this happiness, that seems just beyond reach, takes on different forms for each person, the one true answer remains constant:
Forgiveness From A Sin Nature
The rich, the poor, the lonely and the overly popular—they all need that same touch from a loving God. It’s not about to happen through some human effort of their own, but only by the grace of a loving God. Ephesians 2:8,9 describes this grace as a gift. God’s Spirit turns a person to Himself and His held out hand with the offer of complete forgiveness and then places this forgiveness in the sinner’s life.
The simple words, “I am a sinner in need of the Savior,” need to pass through that searching mind, in one way or another, in order for that tiring soul to find the needed rest. In the days and years and decades that follow that needed step of faith, God feeds that starving individual through the nourishment of His Word and the fellowship of other believers. The world and its ways now seem more and more distant. The Christian life, as God created it, becomes more and more obvious as the only way. After all, Jesus did say, “…I am the way and the truth and the life…”
But… maybe you are not in this predicament. Maybe your life is already surrendered to the Savior. It’s that other person in your thoughts and life that is “beyond hope.” It could be a relative, or coworker, or a next door neighbor. Bootstraps won’t help them, no matter their need. It is the goodness and grace of God that is the answer to their need.
But how do they get it? Do you just wait and hope for the best for them? No! You commit their true need to prayer. You pray for God’s Spirit to touch their hearts. You pray for God’s leading in your own life in sharing with them what God has especially planned for you to share. And then you step out still further in faith and demonstrate the love of Jesus. After all…
God is the only one who fully knows their need.
God is the only one with a clear plan to meet it.
God is the only one with the power to accomplish it.
Without God intervening in our lives, and granting us the faith to believe, we would all be beyond hope with our bootstraps in a heap, and all worn out.
So the question to you is simple, to whom ever it applies. What’s it going to be…
Faith or Bootstraps