Desperation in the Kingdom

Desperation: a state of despair.

Despair: the complete loss or absence of hope.

Most people despise desperation. It’s not a place anyone wants to be. Hope is the fire of humanity. Yet desperation is of the utmost necessity in the Christian life. Apart from desperation we are dead.

Before we continue I want to emphasize one specific meaning of the word desperation. It can be used to mean that “I will be without hope unless…” For example… people will frequently say, “I am desperate for love.” This is the meaning I intend to portray, for as Christians, we have a living hope. Who is this living hope? Jesus Christ, our Lord and Savior!

Yet desperation is ESSENTIAL to knowing Jesus! One cannot know Him unless one has become desperate. It is impossible. We MUST lose all hope in ourselves and in our flesh. There is no possibility for any salvation through them or any gain by ourselves. If we do not lose hope in ourselves we cannot have hope in Christ. We must become DESPERATE for salvation.

How often do we fail to grasp this? How often do we seek to find some faith and hope in ourselves? When will we realize that all we can do is fail and fall short of the glory of God? Everything begun of man will perish, but what the Lord begins will never end.

When we grasp this truth in our hearts a breaking begins to occur… where we once felt sure of ourselves we now walk with caution… where we once thought well of ourselves we consider our own gppd valueless. Where we once were secure now we are insecure and we begin to weep and cry and grow greatly sorrowful. And a longing takes root in our innermost being… a longing for freedom, for salvation, for comfort… we become ravenous, parched… unsatiable, desperate for a true righteousness!

Apart from Christ, this position is torture. Depression and anxiety rule our lives… hopelessness sets in and the light seems impossible to reach… Desperation and hopelessness apart from Christ is quite possibly the worst condition of mankind. But in Christ, how wonderful is this position of man! How wonderful when man realizes his place and is humbled before a Living God?! How precious is it when we realize our absolute dependence upon our Creator for everything we truly need!

From this place of humility before the Lord, He is finally able to work HIS will in our lives. Our own will has been broken and surrendered as we see the futility of exercising it against our God and King. And when He sows, He reaps bountifully. When we are submissive, His authority reigns in us and thus His power can be revealed through us. How glorious when the power of God is revealed among men!

Yet how often do we shy away from desperation… afraid of the hardship… afraid of the death of our self-confidence and security? How often are we unwilling to trade our earthly treasure and earthly gain and earthly security for heavenly and eternal treasure and gain and security!? How we long to save our lives… when the only way to find our life is to lose it!

Unless a grain of wheat falls into the earth and dies… it remains alone. Until we are willing to die, we will not see the fruit or change in our lives or the lives of those around us. How pitiful this position! How wretched is this waste of riches!

Don’t we understand that it is the poor in spirit who will inherit the kingdom of heaven? Don’t we recall that it is those who mourn who will be comforted? Is it not the meek who will inherit the earth? Surely those who hunger and thirst for righteousness will be satisfied!! Or how can we show mercy until we have seen our desperate need for mercy? How can we be pure in heart unless Christ purifies our hearts!? How can we be peacemakers unless we are at peace with God and have peace within ourselves? Will we even be willing to be persecuted for righteousness if we are not willing to die to ourselves that we might live in Christ?

Have you begun to see our desperate position? Have you begun to see how hopeless it is unless we humble ourselves in desperation before the Lord!?

I have become convinced that desperation about our sin is the only way to be freed from it. Desperation about lost souls is the only way to save them. Desperation for righteousness is the only way to obtain it. Desperation to know Jesus is the only way to know Him. Because desperation is utter dependence… utter faith… utter humility before our God. It is a throwing of ourselves upon Him in hope that perhaps He might show us mercy and grant us grace. Only in desperation do we see how undeserving we are of His grace… and how joyful He is to give it to us when we see how much we need it!

Even after salvation… desperation is the only way to keep our hearts from growing cold and hard. When the burdens are too much for you… cast your cares on Him who cares for you in desperation. If you do not yoı will grow accustomed to it and either fall in anxiety and depression or in self-confidence. When sin threatens to overwhelm you… plead for mercy before His throne, or sin will overtake you, for Jesus alone can take the curse of sin. When everywhere you look you see heartache and hurt… unless you come in desperation before Him your heart will grow used to seeing it and cease to plead for restoration.

Nothing changes on earth without desperation. And I find it to be a law that whoever sows in tears will reap with shouts of joy… and whoever sows sparingly will also reap sparingly. This is why one of God’s greatest gifts to man is conviction. This is what has been said by the men of faith since Jesus. What has been displayed in the Word of God since the life of Abraham, who interceded in desperation for a wicked city with a few righteous. Do you want to see change? Are you desperate? And are you desperate enough to obey whatever your King commands?

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