Of all the things that we struggle with in the race of faith, we struggle the most through the hard moments of life. I think everybody does. We struggle with the length of the race; we’re running for a lifetime. We struggle with burnout and faith-fatigue because the race is so long. We struggle with distraction, i.e. we struggle to keep our eyes focused in the right place and on the right thing. We’re lured in all sorts of different directions after all sorts of the different things, some of them are even very good. We struggle with temptation and deceit. We struggle with all kinds of things in this race of faith, but perhaps, perhaps the hardest and most painful thing we face in the race of faith are the hardships and trials of following Jesus. We all deeply during trials because those hard moments seem to go so contrary against the good that God has promised. The hard moments and hard times of life lead us to question just about everything. The hard moments and the hard times of life lead us to doubt just about everything that God has said. Tonight as we unpack Genesis 22, we learn a lot about faith as he watch Abraham trust God no matter what he saw or felt.
No one really knew or understood what was going on that week when Jesus rode into Jerusalem on a donkey. The crowds sang and shouted, but they didn’t really understand. The crowds crowed and called for his crucifixion, but they didn’t really get it. Pilate didn’t understand Jesus. No one, but Jesus understood. And thank God that he did. Because Jesus was condemned, the condemned can go free! Mark 15:1-14.