A Good Reward
MEDIUM: ACRYLIC ON CANVAS
“Two are better than one, because they have a good reward for their toil. For if they fall, one will lift up his fellow. But woe to him who is alone when he falls and has not another to lift him up!” Ecclesiastes 4:9-10 ESV
All have sinned and fallen from grace more times than we can count. Isaiah 59:2 teaches that our own iniquities separate us from God. Yet, there are also times in our life when we as Christians are walking in obedience pleasing to our Heavenly Father and the unexpected darkness of night grips us to believe the lie that we are alone. Naturally, fear sets in when we set our eyes only on our circumstances. And it is fear that catapults us to forget truth — Jesus supernaturally holds us close in His inner circle!
The nanosecond we forget Jesus is near, voices from the dark begin to whisper lies: failure, hopeless, unloved, unlovable, anxiety, overwhelmed, overlooked, misunderstood, fearful, unworthy; the list is too long. Every single whisper is intended to exhaust God’s people emotionally, physically and spiritually, keeping them from being affective for the kingdom work of God. This is not how God’s people are meant to live!
While Christ is our only faithful friend who has the power to lift our souls from the muck and mire, He is also the best gift giver of Godly people in our life. None of us are meant to journey through life alone. Hence, God created Eve to be a helpmate for Adam. We know her story. She wasn’t perfect - she sinned. But what if we looked ever so slightly beyond her fall. I see it! Can you? God is there in the garden walking and talking her through her sin situation. I envision the scene in my mind to look like this — as Jesus and Eve walk and talk intimately; the tree of good & evil is behind them. The further He positions Eve away from the lie, the whispers of the enemy are hushed because TRUTH is speaking directly to her.
Recently, I asked a couple of my girlfriends who are strong in their faith to join me in a prayer. I was about to walk into a spiritually challenging scenario. I desperately wanted God to walk me out of it believing His truths no matter the circumstances. Shortly after my SOS text message was sent the notification ding on my phone sounded. The message was the truth I clung to in the days ahead — “Praying for you. Focus on the now. Don’t look back — you’re not going there!” I can’t help but wonder if God’s grace that day in the garden walked Eve in a direction where she wouldn’t and couldn’t look back, setting the first example for all of us to walk it out listening to His truths when traversing the difficulties of life.
Whether it be a spouse, a family member, or a good friend, God has placed people in our lives to help us better see His goodness and love. When we reject the help and influence of others, life takes on significant burden and hardship. He is constantly working to bring us strength and encouragement through the people around us if we will only open up our hearts and receive it.
Who is it that God might want to strengthen through you? Look for that person today! With the help of Jesus, together we are spiritually strong enough to lift each other up receiving a good reward.
Let us hold tightly without wavering to the hope we affirm, for God can be trusted to keep his promise. Let us think of ways to motivate one another to acts of love and good works. And let us not neglect our meeting together, as some people do, but encourage one another, especially now that the day of his return is drawing near.
Heather Lamp, 2022