“Are you tired, rundown, listless? Do you poop out at parties?” Does anyone recognize this quote? If you don’t, picture Lucille Ball holding a big bottle of medicine called Vitametavegamin on the I Love Lucy show. I often joke I need to buy some Vitametavegamin to help my body feel better. During those times when my body doesn’t want to cooperate, I am definitely tired, rundown, and listless! And forget pooping out at parties; I rarely make it to the party because my body crashes long before I am able to get there.
When it comes to sickness, people are willing to try anything if they believe it will make them feel better. Desperation makes a man willing to do whatever it takes to solve his problem. Unfortunately, there are few solutions to life’s greatest problems, sickness included. More times than not, “solutions” are like Vitametavegamin. If you remember that particular I Love Lucy episode, there was actually very little vitamins, vegetables, and minerals in the medicine. It was filled almost completely with alcohol. Yet knowing this doesn’t stop us from longing and searching for the ultimate answer to our problems.
The first Beatitude is found in Matthew 5:3. Jesus said, "You're blessed when you're at the end of your rope. With less of you there is more of God and His rule." The more common translation of this verse says, "Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven."
I'll be honest; I've never understood what is meant by being poor in spirit. In the past, I’ve always thought of monks living in burlap sacks when I read this verse. “Poor in spirit” didn’t make sense to me. Yet I think anyone who reads this can say he knows what it means to be at the end of his rope. Be it sickness, loss of a job, financial hardship, a rebellious child, or mounting stress, we have all had those moments in our lives when we felt we had nothing left to give and weren’t sure how much more we could handle.
None of us like being at the end our rope. It means we have no control over our lives and don't know how a problem will be resolved, something that, if we’re honest, scares most of us. It's humbling when we come to the end of our ropes because we don't have the answers. We don't know how to solve the problem. And although we think it’s bad to admit we don’t have a solution for our dilemma, God says it's a good thing. It means we've finally come to a place where we know we can't keep going without God's help. We cry out to God for His help and intervention. In our desperate need, we look to Him and allow Him to take control of our lives and problems, which is why Christ said we are blessed when we are at the end of our rope. It is then we let go of our need to be self-sufficient and in control of everything that happens in our lives. When we do this, it opens the door for us to see God in a powerful and mighty way, something I think we could all agree we need.
So whatever challenges you find yourself facing at this moment in time, maybe it's time to admit you don't have the answer to the problem. Allow yourself to come to the end of your rope. For it is there we open the door for God to reveal Himself in our lives, and then, we are most definitely blessed.
"Are you tired? Worn out? Burned out on religion? Come to Me. Get away with Me and you'll recover your life. I'll show you how to take a real rest. Walk with Me and work with Me - watch how I do it. Learn the unforced rhythms of grace. I won't lay anything heavy or ill-fitting on you. Keep company with me and you'll learn to live freely and lightly." ~ Matthew 11:28-30 (The Message)
© March 14, 2013