Feel Down? Look Up.
God can make you strong, beloved, in the very area where you are weakest. Instead of giving up, look up and trust your blessed wonderful Lord.
Alright, thank you very much, and hello again dear radio friends. How in the world are you? Aren’t you glad we can be in the world but not of it? Hallelujah for that. This is your good friend, Dr. Cook. I’m delighted with this opportunity once again, to share with you from God’s word. I’ve just been praying that every word that I speak might be directed by the blessed Holy Spirit of God. Let’s trust that God will have something special just for you, my beloved friend, as we fellowship together around God’s inherent, infallible and inspired Word, the Bible.
We’ve come to the end of Colossians 4. We’re just commenting on the last verse and the post script that tells who was the amanuenses, so to speak, writing down Paul’s words. “The salutation by the hand of me, Paul.” Remember the personal touch is so important. When you write a letter don’t let it be coldly impersonal.
Small thought about writing letters, this is not in the text, I’ll just throw it in free. When you write a letter, don’t use that formal of phraseology, “Yours of the 13th instant received, and in reply would state,” all of that business. You don’t do it that way. You don’t talk to people that way. Write your letter just as though you were talking with the individual. Let there be a personal touch in it. If there is something that you can say that relates to the other person’s life or lifestyle or some experience that you may have shared together, put that in the letter.
Maybe you’re writing about the 12 dozen widgets or whatever it may be, but either as a P.S. or in the body of the letter you could say, “You know Jim, I often think of the time that we had together fishing up in Lake Superior. Weren’t those great days? We ought to try that again sometime!” That tells the person that you know about him as an individual, doesn’t it? The personal touch in your telephone conversations and in your one-on-one conversations with people and in your letter writing, it is so important to let the other person know that you know that he/she is a valuable human being.
Greet people as you meet them. Look in their eyes. Don’t just look down and say hi. Look in their eyes and smile and recognize that they are individuals of importance to you. It was said of President Kennedy that he had the gift of making a person feel… that when President Kennedy was speaking with him, he and the President were the only two people in the universe. He gave his attention directly and fully to the individual, made him feel important. That’s a great gift to have. But you can develop it, beloved. You and I can develop that trait and oh how people will appreciate being treated as persons, not as just as numbers on a computer card. Alright?
He gave that word “Grace be with you”, that’s what we’re talking about the last time we got together. There’s one or two other thoughts before we wind that up and then we go on to the post script written from Rome, etc. “We have good hope,” it says, “through grace.” That’s the 2 Thessalonians 2 passage. “Good hope through grace.” Did you know that because God has saved you by His grace He also has tied Himself to you and all the possibilities of your life for all eternity?
Take for instance a verse like this, “When Christ, who is our life, shall appear, and then shall ye also appear with Him in glory.” That takes a sinner saved by grace and brings him right into the presence of the Savior and lets him share all that the Lord Jesus Christ is doing as Lord of all. Hope.
Peter says, “God has begotten us again unto a living hope by the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, to an inheritance incorruptible, and undefiled that fadeth not away, reserved in Heaven for you, who are kept by the power of God through faith and the salvation wherein you greatly rejoice.” The joy of salvation is predicated upon the new birth obviously. But the new birth leads to that blessed hope of all of the wonderful future with the Lord Jesus Christ.
Have you thought about your future with Christ? I don’t mean just here on this earth. That is important of course. We can’t see around the corner but God is already there. “Known unto God are all His works from the beginning of the world,” the Bible says. We can’t see around the turning of life’s corners but our blessed Lord already has been there and He’s guiding us step by step.
“In all thy ways acknowledge Him and He shall direct thy paths”, says God’s Word. But beyond that, beyond that blessed possibility of the uncertain tomorrow is being monitored and directed by God Himself for His child. Beyond that, there is that blessed eternity with our Lord already mapped out for you believer, because God knows you and cares about you. “Casting all your care upon Him; for He careth for you,” says Peter. Good hope through grace.
God has saved you by His grace and in so doing He tied His almightiness and His own integrity to you. “That by two immutable things, in which it was impossible for God to lie, we might have strong consolation, we who have fled for refuge to the hope set before us,” the writer to the Hebrews says. Good hope through grace. I’m glad for that hope, aren’t you?
Then we can be strong in God’s grace. God can make you strong at the very point where you’ve been weak. Isn’t that a great truth to know? Paul says that in 2 Corinthians, “Therefore will I rather glory in my infirmity that the power of Christ may rest upon me for when I’m weak, then by God’s grace I’m strong. He said unto me, ‘My grace is sufficient for thee; for my strength,’ God says, ‘is made perfect in your weakness.’” “Be strong in the grace that is in Christ Jesus”, Paul’s advice to Timothy in 2 Timothy 2:1. “Be strong in the grace that is in Christ Jesus,” is a statement that reminds us that God’s wonderful saving, keeping grace, transforming grace, can make us strong right in the point where we’re weak.
Do you have any weak spots in your life? Oh yes, so do I. Oh how frail and faulty we are after all. I get discouraged with myself oftentimes. Don’t you? Yes, we do have our weak places. We have the places where typically we cave in. We have the areas of personality where oftentimes we just wish it were different. Some of us habitually talk out of turn. Some of us habitually get discouraged and gloomy and down. Some of us habitually fail to follow through, plans are made and we never follow them through. Some of us habitually are the victims of our desires and our lusts and our flesh gets in the way.
Well, I don’t know what your particular problem may be. I only know that the Bible tells me and the Spirit of God witnesses in my own heart that the grace of God can make you and me strong at the very point where we’ve been weakest. Oh, I need that today and so indeed do each of you. For whatever our particular besetting fault may be, and we’re all different, aren’t we? Whatever our particular besetting fault may be, God’s wonderful grace can make us victors in that very area.
I approached my father one day while he was still living in our home. He was blind by then, glaucoma had robbed him of his sight so he could no longer see. It was a great tragedy to him when he had to give up riding his bicycle. He rode it as long as he dared while there was still some glimmering of sight left in one eye. He would squint along the curb as he rode the bike there on a Chicago side street and it seemed to him to be the evidence that he was still was very much alive. We always prayed that he wouldn’t kill himself when he went out. But one day he hung it up. He said, “Boy, I got to give it up. I can’t see to ride it anymore.”
So the days and the years went by and one day I was upstairs, came up the stairs to see him, just to say hello, see how he was doing. His room was upstairs in our house there in Chicago. It occurred to me to ask him something. I said, “You know, Pop, you’re really a very shy individual,” and certainly he was. Why when company would come to our house, if he didn’t know them he would disappear. He was shy. He’s just embarrassed to meet people on that basis. But I said, “You know, Pop, when you’re talking about the Lord Jesus, you’re as bold as can be and charming as well. You don’t seem to have any hint of embarrassment whatsoever.” How is that?
He thought a moment and turned his sightless eyes in my direction and smiled. He said, “Well, my boy, after I got out of the army in the Spanish-American War, and came back to Ohio, I met your angel mother and we got married and settled down. Then, there was news of an evangelistic campaign going to be held in the area where we lived.” They lived in Rossford, Ohio, which is right outside Toledo.
He said, “We heard about this evangelistic campaign and they told us that there were classes being held to train personal workers.” That’s what they called them in those days. Now they call them counsellors. But he said, “There were classes being held to train personal workers so your mother and I enrolled in those classes.” And he said, “I got for the first time the joy of leading a person to Christ.” He said, “It’s just transformed my whole attitude and I’ve never gotten over it. The thrill and the joy of leading somebody to Christ made me different.”
Oh yes, shy individuals, so shy as a boy that he would run away from home if strangers came to the farmhouse where he lived in Ohio. So shy as a grownup that he was embarrassed to meet people outside of the routines of life. But bold as a lion and charming as well when talking about his Lord Jesus Christ. God can make you strong, beloved, in the very area where you are weakest. Would you believe that today? Would you take it by faith? And would you trust your blessed Lord to make you strong in that area where you feel weakest and where so often you fail? Instead of giving up, look up and trust your blessed wonderful Lord. Would you do that?
Oh, He is so ready to do exceeding abundant above all that we ask or think. Always and always there’s more of the grace of God. Did you know that? Always and always there’s more of the grace of God. You can have what you need of God’s grace just when you need it. The old song says, “Just when I need ye most, Jesus is near, to comfort and cheer, just when I need Him the most.” God giveth more grace. Wherefore he saith, “God resisteth the proud, but giveth grace to the humble.” So, let’s get down before our Lord today and in faith let us accept from Him that strength that comes along with the saving grace of God.
Dear Father today make us strong in Thy wonderful grace through Jesus Christ our Lord, I pray, Amen and amen. God bless you dear friend.
UntiI I meet you once again by way of radio, walk with the King today and be a blessing!
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