Hang On to Your Towel

  
To my fellow believers in Jesus Christ:

Don’t throw in the towel.  

I know what discouragement feels like and tastes like. I know what it is to have pain or failure or sadness grip your throat in the middle of the day. Or to have them crash over you in waves a few seconds after you wake up in the morning, once your head clears. I know what that’s like.  

But don’t give up.  

We have a Savior who knew great sorrow. And He now stands resurrected and glorious and radiating power and beauty at the right hand of God. Our Savior knew the sounds of mocking, and knew what it felt like to be deserted by your friends and your family. He saw the brutal ugliness of sin up close, where it snarls and spits at you and beats you with whips until you bleed.

“Since then we have a great high priest who has passed through the heavens, Jesus, the Son of God, let us hold fast our confession. For we do not have a high priest who is unable to sympathize with our weaknesses, but one who in every respect has been tempted as we are, yet without sin. Let us then with confidence draw near to the throne of grace, that we may receive mercy and find grace to help in time of need.”  

Hebrews 4:14-16

Peter knew what it was like to sin massively and publicly and then be repaired and restored by the grace of that Great High Priest. Moses knew the patience of that same God after having the Lord mercifully respond to his anxieties about being a poor speaker or leader. Ezra and Nehemiah saw the power of that God’s unshakeable love as He brought His people back from their exile and their discipline. Those who have gone before us have seen that their flaws and their frailties and their failures are not the last word in the story of a child of God; the forgiving and resurrecting grace of that God is.  

Since then, we have this great hope procured by this great Priest, don’t give up. Don’t lose heart. I don’t care how bad it is, I can tell you with confidence that He knows your pain, that He cares, and that He can bring you to eternal joy by grace through faith. Ask the Holy Spirit to speak to your heart that you are truly an adopted child of God, and that you have all that comes with that unspeakbly sweet adoption.  

Your chest may tighten over a financial collapse, but it can’t separate you from Jesus. Despair over brokenness in your marriage may crush you, but it can’t pull you from your Savior. You may feel guilt and shame over your sins, but they cannot remove the seal of the Holy Spirit from your soul.  

If you’re feeling the pull to give up, hang on to that towel a little longer. For the believer, it never ends badly. The grave won’t be able to hold your bones, and the Devil will see you dancing at the dinner of the Lamb he so hates.  

I can sympathize with your pain, but more important than that is the fact that He can.  

Hang tight. You have a better Jesus than you can even begin to imagine.  

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