“The heart is deceitful above all things and desperately wicked: who can know it?” Jeremiah 17:9
“And the Lord said…But I have prayed for thee, that thy faith fail not: and when thou art converted, strengthen thy brethren.” Luke 22:31, 32
In my darkest hour, on my knees, crying out before the Lord, clouds of darkness rolling in, blackening my blue skies, blocking out all rays of sunshine. My spirit grieving, heart broken, soul inconsolable as I bear the weight of my sin and shame (never, in a million years, thought I would be in this position). Sinning against the God who loved me and paid such a heavy price to redeem me and equip me to live above sin. Accepting the punishment for my guilt. Anticipating my final fate. Abandoned by friends. Condemned by the church. Giving up. Closing my eyes. Considering the world for comfort and support.
Then Jesus spoke to me. Yes, directly to me. He was there all the time. Catching my tears, examining my heart. When others abandoned me, Jesus was always there. Walking with me, carrying me, understanding me, knowing my heart. Jesus said, “Never give up”. Just three words. But they were HIS words! Words that provided comfort and strength. Words of love and guidance. At that moment, no one else mattered. I knew HE loved me! I knew HE forgave me! I pulled myself together as I began to meditate on what just happened…a personal visit by the KING OF KINGS…HE doesn’t want me to give up! He knows how sorry I am. He sees something more in me. And for HIM I will do anything!
The clouds began to dissipate. I could see the rays of sunshine break through. I began to walk a new resurrected walk with newfound strength and knowledge of the power of the CROSS. Grateful for my very personal relationship with the Savior.
When, in your darkest hour, you look toward the innocent, condemned man, beaten and hanging right there next to you, look a little closer and you will see YOUR sins nailed to HIS cross. Receive His sacrifice, accept His forgiveness, be strengthened by His saving power and walk in new strength with new knowledge and remember what Jesus told Peter when Peter was sure he would go with Jesus, “both into prison and to death” (Luke 22:33), “…I have prayed for thee, that thy faith fail not: and when thou art converted, strengthen thy brethren.” Luke 22:32
Even in your darkest hour, never give up!
Evang. Crystal Wallace