You know, we celebrated not too long ago the wonderful first guys to land on the moon and walk on the moon. Neil Armstrong, of course. But, you know, when he first stepped onto the surface of the moon for his “one small step for man,” he really didn’t look like himself. No, he was totally wrapped up in that modern-day armor we call a space suit. Well, there is a reason of course. The moon is an environment hostile to humans. An unequipped, unprotected astronaut would have died in an instant of lunar exposure. Why? No oxygen. That big pack on his back – that was the margin of survival.
I’m Ron Hutchcraft, and I want to have A Word With You today about “Your Personal Life Support System.”
Now if the Apollo astronauts had depended on their surroundings for their lives, they would have died on the moon. Instead, they depended on the life-support system that they carried with them!
Actually, you don’t have to go to the moon to find a hostile atmosphere to survive in. We’ve got that right here. Spiritually speaking, we live in an environment where the air is often pretty polluted with temptation, with totally un-God ways of thinking, with stress, with negativity. When that’s pretty much what your soul breathes all day long, you end up gasping for air and sometimes going under.
What we need is something like the Apollo astronauts had; we need a life-support system that will sustain us through the bombardment of the day. But it needs to be something totally dependable and highly mobile – a life-pack that you can have with you everywhere you go. And there is one. Our word for today from the Word of God, Psalm 119:11, says, “I have hidden Your word in my heart that I might not sin against You.” David says, “I have planted God’s words in my heart to answer the sinful pressures that are coming against me.”
So what’s your personal life-support system in a spiritually and emotionally hostile environment: the words of God, committed to memory, so you’ll always have them when you need them. You can’t always carry a Bible around with you, and if you do, you wouldn’t usually have time to start looking up verses in the middle of your situation. In fact, you’d probably have to carry a concordance, too, so you’d know where to look in the Bible!
But you can always carry Scripture that you have “hidden in your heart.” During the Vietnam War, and you may have heard this, there were American pilots imprisoned for years in a prison they call the “Hanoi Hilton.” And they tried to piece together as much of the Bible as they could from memory. I wonder how much of a Bible you’d have if all you had was what you’ve memorized? In a sense, that is all you have when you’re in the middle of a real life situation.
So, maybe it’s time for you to get serious about a regular program of committing Bible verses to memory. What you’re doing is you’re actually planting the responses of God in your personality so you can respond to what’s happening with a heaven-answer, not an earth-answer. How many times have I been sustained by saying Deuteronomy 33:25 aloud, “Your strength will equal your days, Ron” … or Isaiah 40:31, “Those who hope in the Lord will renew their strength; they will soar on wings like eagles. They will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint.” How many times have I been helped by the battle cry of 2 Corinthians 10:5, “We take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ.” Man, I’ll tell you, the list of times I’ve been rescued by a verse that I’ve made my own is endless.
D.L. Moody said, “When you’re thinking sin, think Scripture.” You can’t think Scripture if you don’t know any Scripture. Our minds are cluttered with tons of earth-trivia. We need more of heaven in our heart, don’t we? So, load up on heaven’s oxygen – God’s own words – and you’ll be breathing better air all day long from that life-support system that you carry in your heart.