Writing about Hebrews these last few days has been something of a challenge. The language is so direct, so stark. The warnings are dire. And yet it is shot through with such grace and hope. As Christians, we should focus on the hope of a passage such as yesterday’s, without ever losing sight of the battle that we are engaged in, that is being waged around us, over us and within us. Even as Jesus has won the greatest victory, evil is all around us, trying to devour us, divert us from the path of following the way of the King.
We are hidden with Christ in God. This has become a powerful truth for me this year. On the (many) days when I have doubted myself, my calling, my abilities, whether my body or my mind are able to sustain what is required of me to be this person and do these things, I’ve returned again and again to this. All around, battles rage. In society, between nations, war is waged on the poor and needy, the elderly, the infirm, the widow and the orphan. At all these, and the many other wars that are seen and unseen, it appears that it is the hope of the enemy to distract, divert and devour, but we can stand firm on the truth of the love of God, the truth of the good news of Jesus Christ. But we shouldn’t just stand firm, prim and proper in splendid isolation. Everyone needs this. It’s not just for us who are aware that God loves us, it’s for everyone.
So don’t fall away. Don’t leave the path. Even if you’re stumbling, crawling along today, keep going. Let someone else carry you for a few steps if need be, but keep going, and keep your eyes, your heart, your mind, the core of what makes you you, focused on God. Being alive, right now, following Jesus, that’s what this is all about.