The other night, I was reading and, for some reason, the hymn “The Solid Rock” popped into my head, particularly the refrain, “On Christ the solid rock I stand; All other ground is sinking sand.”

I have no wise insights or elaborations on that. But I just found myself relishing in those two lines, and in the truth they portray. We shouldn’t be surprised that anything else we try to stand on will sink. I’m becoming more and more aware that I can’t stand on my ability to be a faithful servant of Christ, or even a half-decent Christian husband to my wife. But if I stand on Christ, I am standing on a Solid Rock – THE Solid Rock. If I try to stand on my own knowledge or gifts, they will absolutely fail every time. Last week, our pastor (a.k.a. my father-in-law) was preaching about hope in Christ. And as followers of Christ, we can rejoice that our eternal hope is provided exclusively by Christ’s work on the cross. What a frightening thought, that if not for God’s unmerited act of kindness, I would be absolutely without hope.

This is an idea I’ve been familiar with for some time. But it seems that God, in His grace, has chosen this time to remind me of the gospel that I forget so easily. I believe He’s providentially placed certain events in my life, and certain reading materials, not necessarily to teach me anything new, but to refresh the simple gospel message in my heart. I’ve always associated spiritual growth with learning new things about God. So to re-learn things I’ve already “learned” seems weird to me. But maybe it’s just me learning for the first time that the gospel itself should be the true center of my faith, that I should “know nothing except Jesus Christ and him crucified.” (1 Co. 2:2) It baffles me how something so simple can be so hard for me to understand, much less live out in my everyday life. Maybe that’s part of why the gospel is mysterious. But God has been faithful and patient with me. So I’m grateful.