Some trust in chariots and some in horses, but we trust in the name of the LORD our God.
(Psalm 20:7 NIV)
Ever done a “trust fall?” You know, that go-to icebreaker everyone does at a school orientation, first night of camp, training at a new job–wherever.
You stand straight, close your eyes, keep your arms still, and fall back, knowing (hopefully) that there’s someone behind to catch you.
It’s a moment of vulnerability. For those few seconds in the air, you’re not supposed to stop yourself from falling. Instead, you trust someone else to help you.
But when you feel like you must catch yourself, trust doesn’t come easily.
One of my favorite hymns, “My Hope is Built on Nothing Less,” includes a familiar refrain:
On Christ the Solid Rock I stand
All other ground is sinking sand
Throughout the song, hymn writer Edward Mote emphasizes the fact that the Lord is our Rock–our strong foundation that can never be shaken and will not move.
Essentially, He’s the person you want behind you during a trust fall.
Anything other than Christ Himself is sinking sand.
According to HowStuffWorks, quicksand is a material you definitely don’t want to be caught in: “the more you struggle in it, the faster you will sink.” Quicksand is sand that has been oversaturated with water, so its particles do not have enough friction to support weight. Once agitated, whatever stands in it and tries to escape will sink deeper and deeper, below the surface.
Whatever we stand in–or set our foundation on–that is outside of Christ can have a similar sinking effect. Immediately, we might think of obvious sins in our lives. Lying, pride, envy, lust, hatred, unforgiveness. When we pursue these sins, we soon find that we sink deeper and deeper, losing ourselves in them. Fighting to escape them on our own may even cause us to struggle harder and sink faster.
That’s where standing in Christ comes in. Even when we fall, we can turn back to a Savior who separates our sins far from us (Psalm 103:12) and is ready to forgive us as we confess our sins to Him (1 John 1:9). A God who promises His presence during temptation and even provides a way out (1 Corinthians 10:13).
When we lean on Christ as opposed to our weaknesses, we find victory.
But what about “good” things we might pursue? A higher education, a promotion at work or a new business? How about building better finances, serving others, and seeking strong relationships? These are all awesome blessings we can enjoy and use for the glory of God.
However, if doing good things becomes your central focus and identity, you will find yourself sinking in disappointment.
At any point, any of these good things can buckle under pressure.
Remember this: When normal sand becomes oversaturated with water, it cannot support what it typically should. When you idolize the gifts, talents, and blessings God gives you, they no longer are blessings but burdens. Suddenly, serving at church becomes a performance act to gain the approval of people. That new job you were waiting for is more stressful than you anticipated. The friend you would do anything for totally blindsides you. The money you’ve been saving is stolen from you.
These examples are not meant to create fear but to encourage a balanced perspective. Anything outside of Christ will never bring you true security. All material things are temporary. When you invest all on temporary things, you will eventually lose everything. Nobody’s love or provision can fill you and satisfy you the way God’s love can. His love is perfect and cannot fail you. Even our own strength isn’t forever, and our own love isn’t perfect. We fail ourselves and others all the time.
We can and should appreciate blessings, but blessings aren’t meant to be gods.
Do you want real security?
Worship the God who promises to be your Solid Rock. Trust Him with all your heart, obey His Word, and put Him first.
Let go of the idea that you have to catch yourself. Instead, fall into the arms of your Savior who will provide you with the strength to stand again.
The grass withers, the flower fades,
But the word of our God stands forever.
(Isaiah 40:8 NKJV)
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