Tuesday, November 10, 2015

Loss of Power

"You got the power off?" Sam said from the patio. "What power?" I asked. "Any power. You don't have any power at the barn. I thought you turned it off." A long and very confusing conversation followed as I tried to understand what it was he thought I had done. Finally, I did the only thing that made any sense. I went to see for myself. 

At the barn, Sam and I investigated. The fuses were fine but the lights (and the freezer) were all off. For the first time in 25 years, I realized that I had no idea how or where electricity entered the barn. Sam assured me it came under ground from the pump house, so we headed back to see. Fuses were fine there, too. 

There was nothing else to do but call John the Builder. He came right over, investigated thoroughly, and found the problem. It turned out that two wires had done something they shouldn't (that's my interpretation, not John's explanation) and shorted out. When they shorted out, something else was messed up.  

If that is about as clear as mud, it's because that's how it looks to me, too. The errant wires and their burned out shenanigans have resulted in a total loss of power in my barn. It turns out that the whole mess needs to replaced with a new breaker box. 

It seems odd to me that two wires so far removed from the barn can result in such a loss of power, but they have, and the only solution is to remove the mess and start fresh. It seems odd, but I don't guess it is. I've had that same problem in my own life a few times. Perhaps you have, too. It all starts with one little error in judgment, one bad decision, and the next thing you know, things have snowballed out of control and there is a total mess. It seems like all the power in your life is gone. When that happens, you can stumble along trying to figure out what went wrong or you can just go to The Expert. The writer of Hebrews knew something about this, and he had clearly found the solution in Christ alone. 

Therefore let us draw near with confidence to the throne of grace, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help in time of need. (Hebrews 4:16 NASB)

When we have a mess and a resulting loss of power in our lives, the only sensible thing to do is approach the throne of grace, confess our need and our failure, and receive the mercy and grace God is so willing to give. It's not just the only sensible thing to do, it's the only thing to do. The good news is that we can count on not just mercy, not just grace, but also help in time of need.  With all that, a restoration of power can't be far behind.