All the King’s Horses and All the King’s Men

The familiar refrain of the Mother Goose nursery rhyme goes like this:

Humpty Dumpty sat on a wall,


Humpty Dumpty had a great fall;


All the king’s horses and all the king’s men


Couldn’t put Humpty together again.

As far as you are concerned, do any of these sound familiar?

·     I’ve made a real mess of things lately

·     I’ve backed myself into a corner

·     I don’t see any way out of this

If yes, similar to the disciple Thomas who asked in his darkest moment of doubt and despair, “Lord to whom shall we go?” the Gospel of Christ is made for such a time as this. You have no choice but to allow your heart to be uplifted. Francis de Sales eloquently reminds us, “Now the greater our knowledge of our own misery, the more profound will be our confidence in the goodness and mercy of God, for mercy and misery are so closely connected that the one cannot be exercised without the other.”

I’ll say it 1,000 times—Jesus is fond of our desperation. If we could work our way out of the messes we’ve created, what need is the Cross of Christ? Galatians 2:21 teaches, “I do not set aside the grace of God, for if righteousness could be gained through the law, Christ died for nothing!”

If you can succeed by your own strength, power, and your own might, Jesus of Nazareth will be of no profit to you. If, on the other hand, you’ve come to realize there’s no other recourse but to sprint towards Him, well, then welcome to the Christian religion.  

Our Lord never said come to me all who are self-sufficient, but rather, “Turn to Me and be saved, all the ends of the earth; For I am God, and there is no other.” Is. 45:22 For a case in point, have you ever stopped to notice the point at which Jesus rescued the disciples stuck in the storm at sea? Only after they rowed unsuccessfully for an incredible nine hours, that’s when. Shortly after this time, Peter exclaimed, “Lord save me!”

Tough Times

The only survivor of a shipwreck was washed up on a small, uninhabited island. He prayed feverishly for God to rescue him, and every day he scanned the horizon for help, but none seemed forthcoming. Exhausted, he eventually managed to build a little hut out of driftwood to protect him from the elements and to store his few possessions. But then, one day, after scavenging for food, he arrived home to find his little hut in flames, the smoke rolling up to the sky. The worst had happened; everything was lost. He was stunned with grief and anger. “God, how could you do this to me!” he cried. Early the next day, however, he was awakened by the sound of a ship approaching the island. It had come to rescue him. “How did you know I was here?” asked the weary man of his rescuers. “We saw your smoke signal,” they replied.
What are you to do in light of the predicament you’ve gotten yourself into (I.e., I’ve made a real mess of things lately; I’ve backed myself into a corner; I don’t see a way out of this)? I’d tell you to start by drawing near to God. He’s committed Himself to drawing near to you in return. James 4:8 says, “Draw near to God, and He will draw near to you.” Even Paul admonished Athens’ philosophers as much: “That they would seek God if perhaps they might feel around for Him and find Him, though He is not far from each one of us; for in Him we live and move and have our own being.” Acts 17:27-28
I’ll close with a powerful word from Saint Ambrose. Print it out and paste it somewhere to view throughout your day.
Never forget–what the world, the flesh, and the devil have shattered; only Christ Jesus can put together again. Are you, however, willing to bid Him.

Jesus said, for those who have ears to hear, let them hear.


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