Recently, my son, Nathan, took a paper airplane to the top of a hill near our house. It was a very windy day, and he was excited to watch it soar. A gust of wind crash-landed the plane only a few steps away, though. Nathan walked over and bent down. Just as he reached out to retrieve it, he saw (at least in his mind), a “coiled-up snake, right by the plane!” Nathan said the snake even snapped at his hand.
Nathan has never moved so fast in his life. He didn’t run down the hill.–He flew, screaming, “Snake! Snaaaake!” all the way.
Maybe it was a rattlesnake, and maybe it wasn’t. Maybe it was only a leaf, blowing in the wind. But no matter–he saw a snake, snapping at his hand, and he could think of only one thing: retreat.
Spiritually speaking, I’m so similar. I climb by faith to the very mountaintop with God. There I stand, ready to soar. But the instant something “crashes”–when obedience gets tough–my faith melts. I no longer notice His Spirit at work. I forget the great heights to which God has brought me. I see only the scary things–the “snake”, snapping at my hand. And I think of only one thing: retreat.
“But we are not of those who shrink back and are destroyed, but of those who believe and are saved.” (Hebrews 10:39) Faith isn’t timid or unsure. It is bold and certain. Faith doesn’t shrink back. It advances. Retreat leads to destruction, but faith leads to salvation.
God, make Hebrews 10:39 a reality in me. May I not shrink back with fear. May I instead walk with confidence wherever You lead. I want my faith to please You, God–for You to be proud of how much I trust You. I will never retreat, Lord. By Your Spirit in me, let me soar. Amen.