I saw a video clip, some time ago, of a man called Derek Redmond. He was a brilliant 400m athlete who had been identified as a potential candidate to win the gold medal at the 1992 Barcelona Olympics, but only 100m into his race, Derek tore his hamstring. He was in excruciating pain but tried to hop along to get to the finish line. Out of the stands an elderly man ran, jumped over the fence, and rushed towards him. It was his father. Derek’s father told his son that he had done so well, and that it would be okay to stop running, but Derek had tremendous grit, and was determined to finish his race.
What caught my attention in this story was his father’s response. He put his son’s arm around his neck and became a support for Derek to lean on and to help take the weight off his injured leg. Together Derek and his father kept moving forward. Needless to say, when father and son crossed the finish line, the Olympic stadium exploded with applause for this brave man and his father.
This story reminds me of another person who does exactly that and even more for us when we are ‘limping’ in our lives - the Holy Spirit. In John 16:7, He is described as the Comforter, Counsellor, Helper, Advocate, Intercessor, Strengthener and Standby.
When Jesus was preparing His disciples for the fact that He would soon be crucified, resurrected and then returning to His Father in Heaven, He told them that He would not leave them as orphans, but would send them ‘another Helper’ (John 14:16-18). This meant they would never need to run their earthly race without support. I too am His disciple. This means that, when I need someone to encourage and comfort me, He is the One. When I need someone to speak up for me and to defend me, He is the One. When I need someone to help me to be strong, He is the one. For every situation and season in this life, He is the one.
How often do we battle along with some difficulty in our lives and try to lift our chin and be brave, only to find ourselves feeling completely overwhelmed by the weight of it? We try to cover up our hurts and wounds and wrap our own makeshift ‘bandages’ around them. And yet, all the while we have a Father, who did not leave us as orphans, but sent us a Helper, one who would lovingly catch us when we cannot walk another step. Deuteronomy 33:27 says, ‘The eternal God is your refuge, and underneath are the everlasting arms.’
Although we have a Helper sent by our loving Heavenly Father, we need to choose to trust Him, and to make Him the place we find rest and strength. Isaiah 30:15 tells us that we may need to repent of some of the ways we have tried to do things in our own strength and in our own way, perhaps even disobeying what God warned us about: ‘This is what the Sovereign Lord, the Holy One of Israel, says: “In repentance and rest is your salvation, in quietness and trust is your strength, but you would have none of it.”’
We do not need to keep limping along life without support. All we need to do is to recognise our Helper, lean on His Everlasting arms, and choose to trust Him to carry us to the finish line.
Prayer: Jesus, thank You for reminding me of the Helper You sent us when You returned to the Father. Holy Spirit, please forgive me for looking for comfort and strength in things that are temporal. Thank You for reminding me of this truth - that You are my Comforter, Counsellor, Helper, Advocate, Intercessor, Strengthener and Standby in every season of my life. I choose to trust You. Amen.
Please feel free to use this devotional to send on to your friends or share with your church fellowship. Provided full acknowledgement is made to Seeds of the Kingdom as the source, you are also welcome to use it in a non-commercial way and reproduce it in magazines or other Christian websites. The copyright for any commercial use of the material remains with Ellel Ministries International.