What is Valuable?
Less than a week ago, our community group gathered. We discussed Philippians 3 and the conversation stayed around the idea of valuing God’s word. Do I believe that I need His word? Does my life reflect this? In all honesty, my life often reveals the opposite. I confessed to my brothers and sisters that it’s hard to believe that God’s word meets my greatest need. Life has felt overwhelming for a very long time. A list of special needs that continues to grow. Normal parenting and marriage struggles. Ministry challenges. Deep burdens of people we love. Adoption and attachment struggles. Burdens that feel too heavy to bear. The answer to my greatest need feels very little like Scripture. It feels more like getting a diagnosis or finding a helpful therapy to support the special needs. It feels like removing suffering and sorrow. It feels like healing progressive diseases. It feels like getting a few more hours in a day. It feels like an extra hour of sleep. And my life reflects this. My wheels spin, searching for hope. My search history reveals question after question about new therapies, diagnoses, prognosis, cures for exhaustion and overwhelm, compassion fatigue, attachment. I don’t disbelieve God’s word. I don’t even dislike God’s word. It just doesn’t feel like it touches any of this real life stuff. It sounds like a quiet whisper in a life overcome with shouts of brokenness, needs, sorrow, failure and difficulty.
Days later, I sat in the sanctuary, Bible opened to Isaiah 54. The exposition of the passage was beautiful. “God is pursuing us with compassion.” My ears heard it and then my heart began to believe it. The greater story in my suffering is that God is relentlessly pursuing me with compassion. It is more likely that Mt. Everest will disappear than God’s compassionate, pursuing love for me to disappear. There are great reasons to be afraid in this life, but the greater reason to not fear is His compassion and love. When seasons in my life feel storm tossed and overwhelmed, there is One who remains sovereign and in control. A day is coming when peace will reign. Fear will not be known. In Christ, there is no condemnation. No weapon formed against me will be successful because my foundation is Christ. His righteousness is mine.
And at this moment, God’s word felt valuable. It breathed life into my weary soul. It brought tears. The good kind of tears that grieve honestly with groaning of hope. It affirmed the sorrows and fears of this life and reminded me of my future. I found a Savior not condemning me for undervaluing His word, doubting His goodness, questioning His plans and purposes, succumbing to hopelessness. No, I found a Savior full of compassion, relentlessly pursuing me, offering hope, covering shame and promising an eternity where every sorrow of this life will be redeemed. His word rearranged my needs.
My needs are not what I fear or what I’m trying to fix or avoid or attain. My real need is for a loving, sovereign, gentle and compassionate Savior who is holding me day by day and will carry me through to an eternal future with glory that will make every deep sorrow of this life be but a drop in the ocean. That Savior is made known in his word.
God’s word is incredibly valuable. But be honest. If you think it is, but your habits don’t reflect it, come to Jesus. If you don’t think it valuable, come to Jesus. It is more likely for the ground beneath you to disappear than for his love for you to disappear.