I believe each Christ-follower occasionally goes through a difficulty that is completely perplexing: the reason and surrounding circumstances of the situation make no logical sense. The most maddening of those have no clear direction for handling/resolving, when doing nothing only allows the situation to worsen. I had one of those recently. An unidentified bug bit me when I wasn’t in any environment conducive to bugs. I didn’t even notice it until the bite had swollen to a ¾ inch diameter, hurt and itched. The usual treatments for bites with creams and Benadryl had no effect as the inflamed area grew, reaching a diameter of 3 ½ inches after 5 days. A trip to a doctor brought no answers, but resulted in an antibiotic. After 48 hours of mega doses to load the drug into my system, the swollen area measured 4 ½ inches, was sore to the touch, hot and itchy.
Throughout this time, I was talking to the Lord about it, asking how and why it happened, and what I needed to be doing; as well as, what was the lesson in this event that I needed to know. I had learned years ago as a baby Christian that Jesus was concerned about everything that concerned me (including bug bites), and that I could go boldly to His throne of grace for help. Hebrews 4:16 says: “Let us then approach the throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need.” I had no hesitancy in asking, but I was getting no answers, and now I was out of options.
For the last few years, my consolation in reaching an impasse for any action or solution has been from 2 Corinthians 12:9, “But he said to me, ‘My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.’ Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me.” It appeared I had a bug bite that would take over my entire body if Jesus did not do something. And there it was – that little word “if.” What “if” He didn’t?
The Lord took me back to Hebrews to the verses that describe Jesus as our great high priest: “For we do not have a high priest who is unable to sympathize with our weaknesses, but we have one who has been tempted in every way, just as we are – yet was without sin.” (4:15) The picture He gave me was being lost in a jungle of dense underbrush where several overgrown paths converged. I was standing at that place, clueless, and Jesus joined me from another direction. He smiled and motioned to me to follow Him, saying, “I know where I’m going – I’ve been here before.” In humble gratefulness, I fell in behind. As I walked behind Him in silence, I realized there is no place I will ever have to go (no situation, no task) that He has not been before. The throne of grace is actually that crossroads. My demeanor in coming is not a type of bravado like, “I’m His child, therefore I can ask, get an answer, and move on”. That puts me in charge. I come in the meekness that waits for Him to join me, so He can go before me, because He’s been this way before. My high priest absolutely IS in charge. And with that comes peace.