“Since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses . . .” (Hebrews 12:1)
Facebook can be a curse and a blessing. I waste more time on FB than I really can afford to lose (I see you nodding your head in agreement). One quick scroll can turn into 30 minutes of mind-numbing uselessness. I love to see your precious babies and your memories and I welcome the laughter from the funny things you share. I’ve been blessed to reconnect with long-lost relatives and friends plus, FB makes birthdays a blast! But I really don’t have time for this! Still Facebook, and other social media give me opportunities to reach out with the Word of God to encourage, inspire, and teach more people than I could fit in my living room or a class room at my church. And the encouragement and inspiration I receive from you is balm to my weary heart.
Hebrews 11 lists what we consider the “greats of the faith” – Like Noah, Moses, Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob and even Rahab – a prostitute no less. They are all part of the “great cloud of witnesses” who serve as encouragement and inspiration for us today. Add to that list the apostles like Peter, James, John and Paul, plus those through the centuries who have died for the cause of Christ – men and women who stood in the face of torture and death and praised the Name above every name – and it is indeed a “great cloud” of faithfulness. They are models and examples to us and they are cheering you and me on in our Christian journey. They paid the price for being a Christ-follower and they want us to know that it is worth it.
There is another in that great cloud who is particularly watching and encouraging us. Our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. The Scriptures tell us that Jesus is praying for us; He is asking His Father to give us faith that will not fail (Luke 22:31, Romans 8:34). He is speaking to our hearts through His Spirit. And when the battle is the hardest and we think we have been forgotten, He who sits at the right hand of the Father, stands to bless and encourage us (Acts 7:55, 56). Beloved, you have all the saints of the ages cheering you on. You have brothers and sisters in Christ to support and encourage you. And you have the very Son of God praying on your behalf. With all that – how could you possibly fail?