October 12, 2010

The Cheerleader

Have you ever felt like you needed a cheerleader? Have you longed for someone to stand somewhere off to the side and yell encouragement to you as you went through the day? Wouldn’t it be great to have a cheerleader following you around day and night to do just that?

Colossians 1:19, 20

For in him all the fullness of God was pleased to dwell, and through him to reconcile to himself all things, whether on earth or in heaven, making peace by the blood of his cross.

So often it seems that life is quite a bit harder than it should be. I begin my day and the pile of rubbish that I need to clear out from in front of me seems to be too much for me to handle. Some of that rubbish has been heaped up in front of me by others, but much of it is my own. But my having caused the rubbish does not make it any easier to face—or to clear.

Psalm 85:10

Steadfast love and faithfulness meet; righteousness and peace kiss each other.

To look at life’s difficulties from a slightly different perspective, why do parents attend their children’s sporting events, concerts, plays, and activities? Why do children involved in those activities scan the bleachers or concert hall to get a glimpse of their parents sitting in the seats? Parents try to attend these events because they know that they are providing a huge confidence boost to their children simply by being there. Some parents talk to their children ahead of time, giving them advanced encouragement to call to mind during the event. Some even work out a signal—a look, a hand gesture—that the child will recognize as a reminder of that encouraging word the parent gave prior to the event.

Jeremiah 29:11

For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans for welfare and not for evil, to give you a future and a hope.

But then when we get older and set up our own households, we lose that degree of direct connection with our parents. When we’re at work we don’t have our parents sitting in the next office or cubicle making that gesture to remind us of their support and encouragement.

Even though I have been out of my parents’ home for more than half my life, my mother and father still send me words of encouragement—by phone, by email, by postal mail. Those words of encouragement are a great help when things get tough.

Micah 7:18

Who is a God like you, pardoning iniquity and passing over transgression for the remnant of his inheritance?
He does not retain his anger forever, because he delights in steadfast love.

As Christians, we have a never-failing Father who is with us all the time. He never misses any of our events. And he has given us words of encouragement too. But we often forget those words of encouragement and try to trudge through the day under our own strength without ever gaining the strength of that heavenly Cheerleader. The child in the school play will not receive the encouragement from his parent if he doesn’t look into the audience to see that the parent is there. He will not gain strength from the parent if he doesn’t remember the things his parents said before the event. And neither will we, if we forget those things God has said to us as means of encouragement and motivation.

Isaiah 26:12

O Lord, you will ordain peace for us, for you have indeed done for us all our works.

As I had my devotions this morning I was reminded of many of the encouraging statements God has given to us. I’m going to try to remember them today as I tackle whatever lies ahead. I’m going to remember that my Father is standing out there cheering for me.

Job 22:21
Agree with God, and be at peace; thereby good will come to you.


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