Have you ever had a deep tissue massage? I get one every few weeks as treatment for lower back issues. These aren’t the relaxing, soft-music kind of experience most people imagine when they think of massage therapy. Deep tissue massage is more like surgery—necessary discomfort in order to bring healing. My massage therapist cranks on my muscles, battling every buried knot until it surrenders to her will. And I leave feeling sore but relieved—and free.
I think the Christian life is like that.
We all have deep-seated issues, doubts, or vices. Fears, anxieties, a whole host of troubles—especially following an unusually troubling year. And the longer we let those troubles tighten their hold on us, the more crippled we’ll become. We need to bring them to God and wrestle with Him over the things that hold us back.
Jacob did it. In Genesis 32 the Bible tells us how Jacob, a founding father of the faith, wrestled with God through the night until God blessed him and renamed him Israel. Then in the very next chapter, Jacob built an altar and called it “God of Israel.”
Up until that point, God had only been referred to as the God of Jacob’s fathers Isaac and Abraham. But after Jacob wrestled with God, He finally claimed God as His own.
You know what that tells me? Our struggles have majestic purpose.
They can serve to solidify our faith.
You and I may need to wrestle with God sometimes in order to get our spirit right with Him—just like my massage therapy gets my body working right again.
So what are you wrestling with today? What fears or complaints are you carrying into the new year? What deeply rooted worries, questions, or hope are you harboring for your family?
Will you bring them to God and let Him change you?
A blessing awaits on the other side of the struggle.
“For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all. So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen, since what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal.” (2 Corinthians 4:17-18)
Happy New Year,