Philippians 4:11-13 Not that I was ever in need, for I have learned how to be content with whatever I have. I know how to live on almost nothing or with everything. I have learned the secret of living in every situation, whether it is with a full stomach or empty, with plenty or little. For I can do everything through Christ, who gives me strength.
A couple of weeks ago, we turned our rescued raccoons out. We live on eighty acres in a park like paradise with lots of trees and a small creek trickling through our property. It truly is a perfect place for wildlife to live and enjoy out the days of their lives. The raccoons have been hand fed daily portions of baked sweet potatoes, apples, grapes, bananas, and dog food plus occasional supplements of baked chicken and boiled eggs. Yes our raccoons are quite spoiled. After turning them out, I continue to serve up the same meal on a daily basis until they learn to forage on their own.
Sylvie is my most recent female to release. She has been coming up to the house for treats, tearing up my flower pots on the deck, and making her presence known. This weekend, however, Sylvie got stuck! We have a metal carport cover next to our big shed that is down by the barn which we use for storing feed and equipment. There is a gap of a little over a foot between the roof of the shed and the carport cover. Somehow, Miss Sylvie got onto the carport cover, and then couldn’t get back onto the roof of the shed. There are several trees in close proximity to the shed in which she could use to climb down, but there aren’t any close enough to the carport cover. My girl was stuck. We waited to give her a chance to figure the situation out by herself, but she seemed to truly be stuck. Finally, after realizing that she wasn’t going to get down on her own, my husband put our big 12 foot ladder next to the shed. We placed a heavy board to make a bridge between the two roofs, and I put food and water on top of the shed. It didn’t take her long to get “unstuck” after that. She made her way down, and this morning, the deck flowers have been rearranged again, my front door hanger is on the ground, and evidently, Sylvie has remained “unstuck” for the night!
Have you ever been stuck in a place that you didn’t want to be? Have you ever gotten yourself into a situation in which you couldn’t find your way out? Have you perhaps just felt like you were stuck in a rut? So many times in life we struggle with the thought that life isn’t going the way that we planned, and when we think along this line, we become unhappy about our situation. Life is hard, y’all. It can be full of heartbreaks and disappointments, and sometimes we look around and wonder what happened. How in the world did I get stuck in this rut? How did I get stuck in this situation? Many times, it isn’t our fault, but occasionally we look within and realize that we are totally responsible for the mess we are in, and we are going to need some help getting out of it.
Life is hard, and it seems to be getting harder with each passing day. We have pressing schedules with lists of obligations that we have to meet. We have so many tasks to complete in a single day, and if we dare look at the calendar for the week, we can quickly become overwhelmed. Sometimes we feel stuck in a rut of endless tasks and duties. We want to find a sense of relief and respite, but we can not see any relief in sight. We allow ourselves to dwell on the situation rather than the solution. We long to be rescued.
When we find ourselves stuck and feeling unhappy about life’s situations, we can find great encouragement in scripture. The Apostle Paul always knew exactly what to say. The scripture above was written while Paul was in prison. He tells us that he has learned to be content with whatever he had. He had learned to live with almost nothing or with everything. He was in prison, y’all! He didn’t have anything, yet he was content. How was this so? We read further to see that Paul shares the secret of his contentment. I have learned the secret of living in every situation, whether it is with a full stomach or empty, with plenty or little. For I can do everything through Christ, who gives me strength. It is through Christ that we find the strength to endure every situation. It is through Christ that we too find true contentment. And, it is through Christ that we are rescued!
If you’re feeling stuck right now, you don’t need a ladder and a makeshift bridge to get to where you need to be. No, my friend, you only need “The Bridge”, the Savior. He bridged the gap when He gave His life for your sins, and there is no deep secret here. All you have to do is call out to Him. You don’t have to stay stuck. Let the Savior save you today! And while we wait, even if the weight if the wait is heavy, we can be content knowing that we can do everything with Christ who strengthens us!