27th July 2014

Being Lifted Up 

“…for I have learned to be content whatever the circumstances. I know what it is to be in need, and I know what it is to have plenty. I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation, whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or want. I can do everything through him who gives me strength.”
Philippians 4:11-13 (NIV UK)

I want to tell you about one of the greatest love stories I’ve ever heard—the love of a father for his child. A little over fifty years ago Rick Hoyt was born to Dick and Judy Hoyt. But during the delivery, Rick was deprived of oxygen and, as a result, he was born with cerebral palsy. Doctors encouraged the Hoyts to send their new born son to an institution and forget all about him.

But the Hoyts wouldn’t do that. They didn’t give up on Rick. Instead, they treated him just like any other kid—taking him to the lake, helping him learn to swim and even letting him join the neighbourhood street hockey games. When Rick got to high school, he wanted to compete in a charity 5K run. So his dad constructed a special racing wheelchair and they were off.

Later that night, Rick turned to his father and spoke through his computer voice processor, saying: “Dad, when I’m running, it feels like my disability disappears.” Well, that was enough for Dick. Since that day, they’ve competed in over 1,100 races—and never placed last!

When I heard this story, I was amazed at how well it paralleled our Father God’s love for us. Just like Dick Hoyt, our Father is faithful to lift us up even when we can barely stand. He has given us this promise through the Prophet Isaiah: “But those who hope in the Lord will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint” (Isaiah 40:31).

We know that through Christ, our Father has adopted us—and that our God will always be there—no matter what. And it is by his strength that we are able to fight the good fight of faith and finish the race.

So, take a moment and thank your dad for all the times he carried you, cheered for you and worked alongside you—for all those times his love and care reminded you of God’s own Fatherly love for all his children.

Merciful Father, thank you for all the times you support us, many of them unknown or unrecognised by us. We walk this Christian life in and through your strength, and with courage that comes from belief, faith, in what Jesus did and does for us. We pray in Jesus’ name.

Study by Joseph Tkach


joeandtammyAbout the Author:
Joseph Tkach is the President of Grace Communion International (the Denominational name of The Worldwide Church of God UK), and resides in California, USA.

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