July 20, 2022
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So, when we're discussing roller coasters, and some of us were talking about which ones are the best-which means, the wildest ride, of course. Others of us were talking about avoiding roller coasters. One friend said that she just pleads what she calls "an inner ear condition." Now for me, most roller coasters are a non-issue because I stand next to that sign, you know, that shows how tall you have to be to ride it. So far I've never been tall enough. (No, that's not true. I wish I had that excuse.) Actually, some that I have ridden had these moments when I was pretty sure I had made a very big mistake getting on it in the first place. There are some really high ups and some really scary downs.
I'm Ron Hutchcraft and I want to have A Word With You today about "Getting Off Your Roller Coaster."
No matter how scary a roller coaster may be, no matter how radical its dips and twists and turns, there's good news-it's always attached to the track! Of course, you don't even have to enter an amusement park to know what it's like to ride a roller coaster. You know why? Most of us can testify that life is a roller coaster, right? Ups and downs and twists and turns surprise us, they rattle us, they frighten us, and even make us want to bail out.
Right now, you might be feeling the discouraging or the confusing effects of the roller coaster ride you've been on. It's a good time to remember that no matter how rough the ride, you're still attached to the track if you belong to Jesus Christ. I can give you that guarantee because God gives us that guarantee in our word for today from the Word of God. Philippians 1:6 makes this rock-solid promise: "He who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus."
What God started in you the day you began your personal relationship with Jesus, God's going to finish. No matter how wildly you're being tossed about right now. No matter how far you seem to be falling. No matter how fast everything is racing by. God began a good work in you, and His construction plan for you is right on schedule, no matter what your feelings or your circumstances; whatever they're saying to you. See, He put you on a track to His great plans for you, and you're still attached to that track because it's up to Him to keep you on track.
But when you're experiencing a lot of ups and downs, there are lies that it's easy to start believing. Like "What's the use? After what I just did, after what just happened, what's the use of even trying spiritually?" Well, the "use" is that God's going to finish what He started in you. He promised! Then there's this "It's over" lie - "I blew it and that's it." Wrong. God's going to finish what He started. Sometimes, when the ride is rough, we start to believe the "God doesn't love me anymore" lie; a lie that is demolished with one look at Jesus dying for you on the cross. If He did not turn His back on you then, He isn't about to do it now.
And, of course, the ups and downs can make us believe the lie "I'll never be able to do this." Since when has this been about you being able? You came to Jesus realizing there was nothing you could do to have a relationship with Him. This is about what He can do through you, in you. Or as God says in Philippians 2:13, "It is God who works in you to will and to act according to His good purpose."
So it's been a rough ride. Are you going to believe your feelings, which will probably change in 20 minutes, or are you going to base everything on the facts of God's Word, which have not changed for twenty centuries? The Savior who began His work in you is going to carry it on to completion until Jesus comes. Yes, the roller coaster is going to toss you around, but so what? You are still attached to the track!