Summary: Stop clinging to the things nhot of God.
Let Go of the Rope!
In Bible study class this week, we had a good discussion on the beginning faith walk of Abraham and how his early walk is very similar to our own. During the discussion, I began to think about my own life, the things I hold dear, the things that mean a lot to me. I began to put myself into Abraham’s shoes and I had to consider if God told me to leave all and go could I do it? The thing that we discussed was the fact that because Abraham left all and went when God called it was counted to him for righteousness. Galatians 3 tells us that we are blessed because of Abraham, if we are of faith. Abraham gave us the pattern for our faith walk, but in order for us to receive the blessings, we must start our faith walk. At some point in time, you must start you faith walk. It begins when you accept Christ, but there are a lot of steps you must take after that initial step. Hebrews 11:6 says “And without faith it is impossible to please Him, for he who comes to God must believe that He is and that He is a rewarder of those who seek Him.” This morning I want you to think about your faith walk and as you do, I want to make a request of you Let Go Of The Rope.
One of my former Pastors preached a sermon titled “Hold the Rope”. It was preached in 1985-86 and it was an excellent message. One of the things he said was that it the hardest times, you must hold the rope. When things seems to be out of control, when everything is pulling at you, just hold the rope. In his message, the rope was Christ. By holding on to Christ, you hold on to the force that will sustain you. This morning, for me, this rope represents something else. This rope represents my need to be in control and therefore hinders my faith walk with the Lord. All of us have things that we hold near and dear, things that we actually feel we are in control of. Maybe it is your career, your family, your retirement future, whatever it is, all of us have areas in our lives that we want to keep and control. Because we feel in control, these areas look normal for us – we can handle situations in our lives because we have learned certain responses that we are very comfortable with in any given situation. Think of this rope as your blueprints – we discussed this in bible study also. Blueprints are used to guide you through a process, whether it is building something or making something. They act as a guide to what needs to be done and when. The hardest thing for a Christian to learn to do is live without a blueprint. What I am asking you to do this morning is join in with me and let go of the rope. This rope represents our doubt in God that He is able to take care of this so we feel we must hold on to it and handle it ourselves. Start living our lives by faith, not our blueprint. To do this we must surrender everything to Jesus, believing that He is more than able to handle anything that we bring to Him. Last week I mentioned a song titled “I Surrender All” and I asked you if you had done that? For me, that is the goal – to be able to walk in peace in every situation because I know God has my back and I do not have to work it out.
I want you to picture in your mind that you are hanging in mid air by this rope. The only thing keeping you from crashing to the ground is the rope. Ever heard someone say I am getting to the end of my rope, or I am hanging by a thread. A thread represents the tiniest part of a rope which means that when you use this term you are really saying you are about at your end. But here you are hanging in mid air, holding on to the rope. You cannot climb up; the goal is to get down.
When you started down, you had a lot of rope, you were confident, you believed that you had enough to make it to the ground. You were not concerned or worried about any other possibility.
The rope represented your source. This is when it is very easy to exercise your faith because you have the rope. Our faith at this point is more in the rope than in God. As you get to the middle, you begin to evaluate how much farther you have to go and if you have what you need in order to get there. You are still confident, but you are more evaluative about the outcome. This is the time where you begin to question if you truly believe what you say you believe. It is easier to say yes because you still have part of the rope, but the “what ifs” questions begin to come. Now you are at the end of the rope, you realize that you do not have enough to get to the ground, what do you do? Remember that you cannot go back up and if you let go you lose control and free fall to the ground. What do you do? I am asking you to let go of the rope. Just let go. It is hard to imagine free falling, but let go. No I am not saying when things get too bad you need to end your life, but what I am saying is let go of the things you are trying to control and turn it over to God who is more than able. Look at Matthew the 19th chapter.