By Ellen Ceely
The Collect: Almighty God, whose blessed Son was led by the Spirit to be tempted by Satan: Come quickly to help us who are assaulted by many temptations; and, as you know the weaknesses of each of us, let each one find you mighty to save; through Jesus Christ your Son our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever. Amen. – Book of Common Prayer, the Collect for Year B, First Sunday in Lent
Sometimes I feel like God doesn’t understand what it feels like to be human. When I struggle with temptation or grow weary in suffering, I can lose sight of God’s care for me. I forget his infinite compassion and unending grace. But when this happens, his Spirit draws me back and reminds me to look to Jesus.
Jesus is fully God and became fully man. He understands what it is to live as a human in this world. Jesus knows the pain and frailty of the human body. He came as a baby and lived a perfect life to save us, but he still endured all the complexities of human life. Jesus knew hunger and thirst, cold and heat. He worked long days as a carpenter, undoubtedly injuring himself many times. He never sinned when his siblings teased him. He never despised the people who whispered about his parentage.
If I look to Jesus, I remember that God understands what it feels like to be human. He knows how harsh this world can be. He created the world, but he also lived here—in human flesh—for over thirty years. He is all-knowing and all-seeing, but he also inhabited a human body that broke and ached. Jesus understands. He even understands temptation.
Throughout the week, we’ll study each part of Jesus’s temptation by Satan. My prayer is that you find comfort in these passages as you deepen your relationship with Christ. Jesus is near, and he understands what it is to be human.
“For we do not have a high priest who is unable to sympathize with our weaknesses, but one who in every respect has been tempted as we are, yet without sin. Let us then with confidence draw near to the throne of grace, that we may receive mercy and find grace to help in time of need” (Hebrews 4:15–16). We can look to Jesus and draw near to God with confidence in his everlasting grace.
Do you struggle to see God as someone who understands what you go through? When you’re tempted to forget God’s grace, where do you look? How can you draw near to God in confidence today? We would love to hear your thoughts in the comments.
The Crucified Life small group Christian study is designed to reflect upon the Seven Last Words of Christ from the cross and what they mean for us today. Walk the road of Calvary with Jesus in order to grow closer to Him. The Crucified Life small group study examines human suffering as it is mirrored in Christ’s suffering on the cross and what His seven last words say to a hurting world. Find out incredible insights into these words as Jesus teaches us, even in death, how we can use our suffering and triumph over it for His glory. Begin your Crucified Life today.
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