I Have Fallen and Can’t Get Up

images-11Have you ever gone through a tough situation and cried for help and no one responded? It can be very discouraging. How about when you cry out to God and it seems He is not hearing you. You might feel a sense of despair and all alone.

David recorded many of his emotional valleys in his Psalms to the Lord. In Ps 39:12 he says, “Hear my prayer, O Lord, And give ear to my cry; Do not be silent at my tears”. I believe many people can relate to his cries for help. David like many others have come to a place that they are desperate for God to hear their cry for help. It reminds me of an incident I heard where I grew up.

A adventurous hiker was hiking up a rugged Idaho creek some years back. He was going down the path all by himself enjoying his journey when the rock he stepped on shifted and sent him tumbling down the steep rocky ravine. As his body slammed up against a tree and settled in an outcrop over-looking the creek, He knew


God hears the cry of His children and as a earthly parent responds how much more will your heavenly Father answer!         (tweet)


that his leg was badly broken. Unable to walk and being much to far to even crawl he lay hopeless in the back-country of the Rocky Mountains with the curtain of the day closing.

Barely surviving the frigid cold night he began to yell for help until he hardly had any voice. His journey had come to an abrupt stand still and his future was becoming more hopeless as the day went on.

Then, across the creek and up the ridge came the noise of a chain saw cutting wood for the soon coming winter. The man collecting the fire wood was getting frustrated at his kids who were constantly interrupting him as he cut the fallen tree, shutting off his saw he began to scold them. As his children defended their case they said, “we thought we heard someone yelling for help”. He listened and heard nothing so he continued with the chain saw.

The hurt and almost lifeless hiker knew this was his only hope and began to scream even more. The wood-cutter’s kids knowing they heard a cry for help risked getting in trouble and interrupted their dad agian. Seeing the urgency in their eyes he stopped and walked to the edge of the ravine. He listened and moments before he gave up he heard the faint cry for help.

Though this story ended with a good ending it is unfortunate that in our society there are multitudes of individuals that are crying out for help. Many have gone down a path in their life thinking they are fine and then abruptly interrupted by tragedy. These circumstances will bring the most independent person to cry out for help in desperation. But will there be a answer?

We read in Ex 3:7-8, where God speaks to Moses saying, “I have surely seen the oppression of My people … and have heard their cry … I know their sorrows.” God had heard the cry of His people and understood their sorrows, for they were in bondage to the Egyptians as slaves. God sees the oppression of those that are in desperate situations. In this passage God says, “So I have come down to deliver them”. God hears the cry of His children and as a earthly parent responds how much more will your heavenly Father answer! (Lk 11:11-13) If you’re in that place now, hang on for He hears and will deliver.

It’s not Enough to just Start…You must Finish!

77930917The anticipation of the opening gunfire for the race to begin was gut wrenching to say the least. The runner gets himself all strategically situated in the starting blocks and tunes in on the starting judge in hopes of having a perfect start. Even with an exceptional start it is still how you finish that will grade your performance. There must be a start for sure, but just because you start a race doesn’t make you a winner… only if you finish can you possibly win and receive the reward.


It’s not enough to just start strong; we must finish strong like Paul. (Tweet)


Paul wrote at the end of his life to young Timothy giving every believer some incredible insights for us to live by. We read in 2 Tim 4:7-8, Paul says, “I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith. Finally, there is laid up for me the crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous Judge, will give to me on that Day…”.   He was referring to his journey of life as a race and fight, as he also did in his letter to the Corinthians. He says “I fought the good fight” insinuating that it isn’t easy but will take endurance and tenacity. Then Paul says, “I have finished the race. He didn’t quit because it was difficult or to long, but completed the course set before him. In Cor. 9 he says that we need to run not as a casual jog through a park, but run the race to win. He lets us know that there is a reward for all of us that finish the race of life keeping our faith in the Lord Jesus Christ.

In his tremendous book “Multiplication” Tommy Barnett gives a startling comparison of three young preachers. All of them were filling up auditoriums and having record crowds. Graham, Templeton, and Clifford launched out of the starting blocks like Olympic gold medalist in 1945.

Those that observed them thought the young man; Templeton would be the one who would make it to the top. Even a magazine wrote a feature article calling Templeton the “Babe Ruth of evangelism.” Clifford was a young fireball evangelist. Many thought that he was the most gifted and powerful preacher to come up in the church for many centuries. People lined up for hours to get into where he was preaching. Yet why haven’t we heard of Templeton and Clifford?

Well, in just five years, 1950 Templeton had left the ministry. He pursued a radio career. He became an announcer and a newscaster, telling the world that he no longer believed in Jesus Christ as the Son of God. Can you believe this future “babe Ruth” of preaching was no longer even in the ball park. By 1954 Clifford had lost his family, ministry and health. Eventually he lost his life because of addiction to alcohol. Financial irresponsibility left his wife and their two Downs-syndrome children with no money. This once famous preacher didn’t even finish his race.

In the Christian life…it’s not how you start the race, but how you finish the race that matters. It’s not enough to just start strong; we must finish strong as Paul and the third young man did. His name, Billy Graham, has faithfully run his race keeping the faith for all these years! Even so, let me encourage you not to quit! But synch up your belt and commit to finish the race that God has set before you.