Help - I Have a Christian Puzzle but I Can’t Put it Together!
Read Hebrews 5:11-14 and James 1:22-25
Ever have a puzzle with all those weird shaped pieces including the edges? You have all the pieces and even a picture of how it should look but you can’t put it together. You managed to put together a couple of very obvious, tiny sections but even Googling it doesn’t help!!!!
Today, we have access to more information than any generation before us. It’s wonderful but it can create problems. Jesus didn’t tell us to gather information! I can read “How-To-Do’s” on a thousand things but I can’t do most of them. Partly because I jumped into the article at the top of the Google search – after all, that means it’s the best one – right? Then, as James said, I become a “hearer of Google but not a doer of Google!” Information fools me into thinking that because I “know,” I “do.”
I see and hear but I don’t fully comprehend or apply. Christianity is the same. We can read and listen to thousands of books, articles, Podcasts, and Bible translations because they are all at the tips of our fingers. But, when we try to put it together and make sense of it, we can find ourselves confused. Instead of learning “line upon line, precept upon precept (Precept = a commandment or direction given as a rule of action or conduct),” we pick a little here and a little there but find that our life is still not what we know it should be!
In Acts 19, Paul met some men in Ephesus who had only partial information. They had been baptized in water but not in the Spirit because they had never heard of it. In Hebrews 5:11-14 it was the opposite – people had knowledge but no application so Paul wrote “A Call to Spiritual Growth”. I think that if Paul wrote a letter to us today, he would repeat that section of Hebrews. Just having enough information to pass a Christian Test is not enough. We need help and we need to start with the most basic principles listed in Hebrews 6, learn them, live them and then move to maturity. The Holy Spirit is here to help us mature! One of the major differences between a child and adult is the ability to exercise self-control and thoroughly consider the situations of life we find ourselves in. We understand consequences. We are not selfish – thinking only of ourselves.
“So, God had given us two unchanging things: His promise and His oath. These prove that it is impossible for God to lie. As a result, we who come to God for refuge might be encouraged to seize that hope that is set before us. That hope is real and true, an anchor to steady our restless souls, a hope that leads us back behind the curtain to where God is (as the high priests did in the days when reconciliation flowed from sacrifices in the temple) and back into our place where Jesus, who went ahead on our behalf, has entered since He has become a High Priest forever in the order of Melchizedek.” Hebrews 6:18-20. The Voice
Back to the puzzle - Lots of times when I’m stuck on a puzzle, a friend can take one glance, put a couple of pieces in (frustrating me), and then I can see where some more pieces go. As women, as Christians, as those living in the Kingdom, we need each other so that we may be encouraged, challenged, and helped to be more like the One our soul loves!
Sometimes life presents us with some very hard puzzles and we simply can’t solve them alone. There are also puzzles that we can solve, but it takes much longer to do it alone than together with those who love you. That’s the point. The disciples needed each other and so do we. The Word encourages us to be together in life, in worship, in prayer, in the good and the bad times.
I want to encourage you to reach out. Reaching out is not an invitation to be ridiculed or chastised. It is a moment in which we need support, love, and encouragement. It is not a sign of weakness. It’s just the opposite! It is a sign of great strength because it means your eyes are fixed on the goal and you are running after Jesus with all your heart, soul, mind and strength.