Free-falling into faith
The key was in knowing the person who would do the catching. If a boy or girl had a track record of being a practical joker, or doing hurtful things for the sake of attention, or was physically incapable of taking the weight of the friend in front, then they wouldn’t be trusted to catch. The one who was going to be caught would look the other in the eye to discern any bad motives lurking deep in his thoughts, and also get full verbal reassurance that that brother or sister or friend was not going to let him fall to the ground and hurt his body or his head. Then he would go ahead with the event. The person falling had to trust the person behind him, and in doing so felt the greatest thrill when falling through mid-air to a safe landing, all the while knowing the potential of being hurt. We had the greatest fun doing this.
I woke up yesterday morning with this thought in my head. “Seek ye first [the relationship with Jesus, and all things necessary will be] added unto thee,” taken from Matt. 6:33. If we will make our time with Him foremost and most important, then He will make sure we take care of the other things of lesser importance in this life. He will work in us. Do we trust Him to do that? You say, You mean He will take care of my job’s stressful items and worries if I give Him my most valuable time and energy and thoughts? Yes, that’s what we mean. You mean, He will handle my boss because I spent time with Him instead of giving my 110% to my work first thing in the morning? Yes, that’s what Jesus meant in Matthew 6:33.
If your boss is a Pharaoh, God can take care of him or her. Trust Him; Moses can tell you that He’s done it before. If your supervisor is a ranting and raving Nebuchadnezzar, God can handle him or her and end up subduing him; even converting him. If we give our utmost energy and time to the God of heaven, we can hear our managers and company presidents say with Nebuchadnezzar, “Now I Nebuchadnezzar [insert supervisor’s name] praise and extol and honour the King of heaven, all whose works are truth, and His ways judgment: and those that walk in pride He is able to abase.” (Dan. 4:37).
But the key is in spending more key time with Jesus than with job-related items. Whatever we invest more time into will become our priority—there’s no getting around this fundamental principle. Only In getting acquainted with Jesus, can we learn to trust Him; and this takes time. There is no other way. The heaviest investment of time must be with Him and Him-related activities—Bible study, prayer, the Christian witness and service.
We can make Jesus the priority and still go to work and do our jobs. But heaven and eternity must hold the highest rule. With every truly converted soul the relation to God and to eternal things will be the great topic of life. Great Controversy, p.463.
Our primary purpose for employment is to bring honor God in the effort to lead others to come to Him. We can do this through the thorough and timely completion of the tasks given to us. The Holy Spirit will give efficiency in our daily accomplishments. “Blessed is the man that walketh not in the counsel of the ungodly, nor standeth in the way of sinners, nor sitteth in the seat of the scornful. But his delight is in the law of the Lord; and in His law doth he meditate day and night. And he shall be like a tree planted by the rivers of water, that bringeth forth his fruit in his season; his leaf also shall not wither; and whatsoever he doeth shall prosper.” (Ps. 1:1-3).
To do otherwise—to work for the sake of working, or to make money, or to move up the corporate ladder, or to earn a retirement, etc. is to make the direst of choices. We live in the the investigative judgment, the period of time preparing for the literal day of judgment—Christ’s second coming in power and glory. The parallel period in type was given to Moses in words that show a foreboding to all who do not take heed.
“Also on the tenth day of this seventh month there shall be a day of atonement: it shall be an holy convocation unto you; and ye shall afflict your souls, and offer an offering made by fire unto the Lord. And ye shall do no work in that same day: for it is a day of atonement, to make an atonement for you before the Lord your God. For whatsoever soul it be that shall not be afflicted in that same day, he shall be cut off from among his people. And whatsoever soul it be that doeth any work in that same day, the same soul will I destroy from among his people. Ye shall do no manner of work.” (Lev. 23:27-31).
Our purpose at this heaven appointed period, is to seek out a full reliance on Jesus as our intercessor. That alone will prepare us to stand when He appears in the glory of His Father, “with His mighty angels, in flaming fire taking vengeance on them that know not God, and that obey not the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ: who shall be punished with everlasting destruction from the presence of the Lord, and from the glory of his power.” (2Thess. 1:7-9). To neglect this important preparation in deference to working to make more money and retire is to come up unsuited to receive an immortal crown, and will receive rejection by heaven. “For whatsoever soul it be that shall not be afflicted in that same day, he shall be cut off from among his people.”
As we draw near to Jesus, He is able to draw near to us. And the fellowship with Him through His word and the Spirit will bring a peace and rest and health that the world will not comprehend—free from the worries and life-killing stresses of this captivity. We can live in Jesus’ presence, in continual communion with Him, our heart with His, breathing in His life-giving atmosphere. To opt for living apart from Him and turning to the grueling enslavement under the god of this world, is the greatest mistake, fraught with eternal ramifications.
But, it’s the greatest thrill to fall backwards into a friend’s arms. Likewise, it will be “a fearful thing to fall into the hands of the living God”—but well worth the temporary stress in every way. (Heb. 10:31).
This is illustrated in a vision to Ellen White.
At length we came to a large chasm, at which our path ended. There was nothing now to guide the feet, nothing upon which to rest them. Our whole reliance must be upon the cords, which had increased in size, until they were as large as our bodies. Here we were for a time thrown into perplexity and distress. We inquired in fearful whispers, “To what is the cord attached?” My husband was just before me. Large drops of sweat were falling from his brow, the veins in his neck and temples were increased to double their usual size, and suppressed, agonizing groans came from his lips. The sweat was dropping from my face, and I felt such anguish as I had never felt before. A fearful struggle was before us. Should we fail here, all the difficulties of our journey had been experienced for naught.
Before us, on the other side of the chasm, was a beautiful field of green grass, about six inches high. I could not see the sun, but bright, soft beams of light, resembling fine gold and silver, were resting upon this field. Nothing I had seen upon earth could compare in beauty and glory with this field. But could we succeed in reaching it? was the anxious inquiry. Should the cord break, we must perish.
Again, in whispered anguish, the words were breathed, “What holds the cord?” For a moment we hesitated to venture. Then we exclaimed: “Our only hope is to trust wholly to the cord. It has been our dependence all the difficult way. It will not fail us now.” Still we were hesitating and distressed. The words were then spoken: “God holds the cord. We need not fear.” These words were repeated by those behind us, accompanied with: “He will not fail us now. He has brought us thus far in safety.”
My husband then swung himself over the fearful abyss into the beautiful field beyond. I immediately followed. And oh, what a sense of relief and gratitude to God we felt! I heard voices raised in triumphant praise to God. I was happy, perfectly happy. Life Sketches, p. 192,193.
It’s scary to wholly rely on Jesus, but we must learn to do it. And we will find full trust in His faithfulness to be the greatest thrill ever. :)