Decades ago Carole King penned these lyrics:
When you're down and troubled, and you need a helping hand, and nothing, nothing is going right . . . . just call out my name, and you know wherever I am I'll come running to see you again. Winter, spring, summer or fall, all you have to do is call, and I'll be there . . . .
I doubt she was thinking about Jesus when she wrote those words, but her lyrics came to mind as I contemplated this passage from Isaiah: Listen to me, O house of Jacob, all the remnant of the house of Israel, who have been borne by me from your birth, carried from the womb; even to your old age I am he, even when you turn gray I will carry you. I have made, and I will bear; I will carry and will save you. (Isaiah 46:3-4).
The Holy Spirit was speaking to Israel in this text from Isaiah, but how easily applicable His encouragement is to the individual Christian today. “I will never leave you or forsake you,” Jesus promised. “I am with you always, even to the end of the age” He repeated elsewhere in the Gospels. One cannot contemplate the Bible’s message without coming away with a sense that God’s eye is always on the sparrow, and His eye is even more so on you and me.
My wife and I have been young. Now we are old. And during our more than forty years of marriage we have walked through floods and through fires. Life has bruised us, scratched us, and clawed us. It has taken away our breath, and sometimes kicked us while we were down. But through those decades of growing to know God through prayer and through His Scriptures, we could look behind us and point to each bruise, each flood, each fire, and see where God repeatedly bore us, lifted us, carried us, and saved us.
What the Holy Spirit said to Israel was not only and uniquely for their encouragement. He also speaks encouragement to us in the 21st century. When we who love Him are down and troubled, when we need a helping hand, when nothing, no nothing is going right, we can call on His name and know – because Scripture tells us it’s so – we can always call on His name and He has promised to carry us, to bear us, and to save us who cry out to Him for help.*
*see Jeremiah 33:3 and Romans 10:13.
You can find more of my essays at www.InHimAlone.com