Listen To Most Current
Grace Notes Archive
June 2021 (3)
May 2021 (5)
April 2021 (4)
March 2021 (5)
February 2021 (4)
January 2021 (5)
December 2020 (4)
November 2020 (4)
October 2020 (5)
September 2020 (4)
August 2020 (5)
July 2020 (21)
June 2020 (29)
May 2020 (28)
April 2020 (31)
March 2020 (5)
February 2020 (4)
January 2020 (5)
December 2019 (5)
November 2019 (3)
October 2019 (5)
September 2019 (4)
August 2019 (5)
July 2019 (4)
June 2019 (5)
May 2019 (4)
April 2019 (4)
March 2019 (4)
February 2019 (6)
January 2019 (4)
December 2018 (4)
November 2018 (5)
October 2018 (4)
September 2018 (4)
August 2018 (4)
July 2018 (3)
June 2018 (4)
May 2018 (4)
April 2018 (4)
March 2018 (4)
February 2018 (5)
January 2018 (4)
December 2017 (4)
November 2017 (5)
October 2017 (4)
September 2017 (5)
August 2017 (4)
July 2017 (4)
June 2017 (5)
May 2017 (4)
April 2017 (5)
March 2017 (3)
February 2017 (4)
January 2017 (3)
December 2016 (5)
November 2016 (4)
October 2016 (4)
September 2016 (5)
August 2016 (3)
July 2016 (4)
June 2016 (5)
May 2016 (4)
April 2016 (5)
March 2016 (4)
February 2016 (4)
January 2016 (5)
December 2015 (4)
November 2015 (4)
October 2015 (3)
September 2015 (4)
August 2015 (5)
July 2015 (5)
June 2015 (4)
May 2015 (5)
April 2015 (2)
March 2015 (4)
February 2015 (4)
January 2015 (5)
December 2014 (4)
November 2014 (5)
October 2014 (4)
September 2014 (4)
August 2014 (4)
July 2014 (5)
June 2014 (4)
May 2014 (5)
April 2014 (4)
March 2014 (4)
February 2014 (4)
January 2014 (5)
December 2013 (4)
November 2013 (5)
October 2013 (4)
September 2013 (4)
August 2013 (5)
July 2013 (4)
June 2013 (3)
May 2013 (5)
April 2013 (4)
March 2013 (4)
February 2013 (5)
January 2013 (4)
December 2012 (4)
November 2012 (5)
October 2012 (4)
September 2012 (4)
August 2012 (5)
July 2012 (4)
June 2012 (4)
May 2012 (5)
April 2012 (4)
March 2012 (5)
February 2012 (4)
January 2012 (4)
December 2011 (5)
November 2011 (4)
October 2011 (4)
September 2011 (5)
August 2011 (4)
July 2011 (4)
June 2011 (5)
May 2011 (4)
April 2011 (5)
March 2011 (4)
February 2011 (4)
January 2011 (5)
December 2010 (4)
November 2010 (4)
October 2010 (4)
September 2010 (5)
August 2010 (4)
July 2010 (6)
June 2010 (4)
May 2010 (4)
April 2010 (4)
March 2010 (5)
February 2010 (4)
January 2010 (5)
December 2009 (5)
November 2009 (3)
October 2009 (6)
September 2009 (3)
August 2009 (5)
July 2009 (4)
June 2009 (4)
May 2009 (5)
April 2009 (4)
March 2009 (4)
February 2009 (4)
January 2009 (5)
December 2008 (4)
November 2008 (5)
October 2008 (4)
September 2008 (5)
August 2008 (4)
July 2008 (3)
June 2008 (4)
May 2008 (5)
April 2008 (4)
March 2008 (5)
February 2008 (1)
Grace Notes

Current Articles | Categories | Search | Syndication

LEARN TO RIDE A BICYCLE
by Philip Owen

    Adam, at five years of age, had just learned to ride his bicycle without training wheels.  After only two fifteen-minute sessions, he felt sufficiently adept to venture out on his own.  I watched with a certain amount of parental pride as he went tearing down the sidewalk; nevertheless, I found it hard to explain why, with two-and-a-half feet of sidewalk, and with a broad cushion of grass on the south side, he still insisted on crashing into the fence on the north side.  Off he’d go, talking at the top of his lungs, first hailing me to watch, next excoriating his bike for failing to stay upright; then, he’d crash into the fence or the hedge, pick himself up, examine his scrapes and bruises, and start all over again.

      Weeks later, I still had not tired of watching him ride his bicycle.  Oh, I knew it was something nearly every child does.  Nevertheless, it gave me great satisfaction to see his accomplishment.  As I took pleasure in Adam’s achievement, I couldn’t help thinking of the Lord:  He is like that.  He takes pleasure in our accomplishments.  He rejoices when we are victorious.  He delights in our faith and obedience.

       Have you read the Song of Solomon lately to recall what love the Bridegroom has for his Bride?  “You have made my heart beat faster, my sister, my bride; you have made my heart beat faster with a single glance of your eyes, with a single strand of your necklace” (Song 4:9).  “Turn your eyes away from me, for they have confused me” [i.e., “overcome” me; cf., Ex. 32:10].  Do you recall that David was called a man after God’s own heart (I Sam. 13:14; Acts 13:22)?  And can you believe that the Lord spoke without satisfaction when He asked Satan, “Have you considered My servant Job?  For there is no one like him on the earth, a blameless and upright man, fearing God and turning away from evil?” (Job 1:8). 

       I know that these were great men of God, and we feel that the Lord had a reason to be pleased with them.  But what of Barak, the fifth judge of Israel?  The Lord commanded him to lead an army of ten thousand soldiers against Sisera, “the commander of Jabin’s army, with his chariots and his many troops” (Jud. 4:7b).  Then the Lord promised:  “and I will give him into your hand” (v. 7c).  But Barak was so cowardly of character and so weak in faith that he ran sniveling to the prophetess Deborah and whined:  “If you will go with me, then I will go; but it you will not go with me, I will not go” (v. 8).  Deborah agreed to go, but she assured Barak that the honor in battle would go to a woman.  And so it did.  Barak fought and routed Sisera, who fled in fear to the tent of Jael.  Jael encouraged Sisera to rest, and while he slept, she drove a tent peg through his temple and into the ground.  End of Sisera; end of battle.  It would be difficult to imagine a man so cowardly that he would insist on having a woman hold his hand as he went into battle.  Nevertheless, Barak finally did the Lord’s bidding.  And do you know what?  Barak’s name appears in the list men of faith found in the eleventh chapter of Hebrews!  Barak was fearful, but what of Samson?  Courageous, yes, but carnal in the extreme.  Nevertheless, he was a man of faith, and his name, too, appears in Hebrews, chapter eleven.

      Am I encouraging you to be weak and sinful?  No, on the contrary, I am encouraging us all to be faithful to the Lord.  If a Samson or a Barak could please the Lord, so can we.  Though we owe the Lord  full faith and obedience, still, He is  pleased when we believe and obey Him.  The Lord loves His children.  He rejoices in our accomplishments; He encourages our small steps of faith, our stumbling endeavors, our weak acts of charity.  Don’t wait for a “great” opportunity to please the Lord—it will never come.  Begin today.  Begin now with the small things, the seemingly insignificant ones.  Samson and Barak were not included by mistake; the Word of God does not lie.  Despite their weak and vacillating flesh, they exhibited a faith and obedience that pleased the Lord.  Get on the bicycle.  You will get some bruises and scratches, but, shortly, you will be riding.  And the Lord will beam with joy.

Actions: E-mail | Permalink

Previous Page | Next Page