Just some early morning thoughts from me to you…

A bruised reed he will not break, and a smoldering wick he will not snuff out.”

Isaiah 42:3 (NIV)

He will not crush the weakest reed or put out a flickering candle.”

Matthew 12: 20 (NLT)

There has always been a childlike appeal for me with all of them. A fascination, if you will, in the characters which A.A. Milne parades across the pages of his books about the loveable little bear, Winnie the Pooh, and his eclectic group of equally loveable colleagues living in that magical land called the Hundred-Acre Wood.

And as I sit here waiting for the day to unfold into a week of what I have learned will be once-in-a-lifetime opportunities, and also while waiting for our two Granddaughters to return from a trip with their mom and dad to Virginia, I think I have finally figured out why those characters hold such a fascination for me.

At some point in the journey of my life—and perhaps you can identify—I have seen a bit of each of them, in me.

There’s Winnie the Pooh, himself—a slightly self-absorbed round little bear incessantly on the prowl for honey—leaving him at times completely unaware of anything or anyone else around him.

And then there’s Eeyore—a donkey with a woeful countenance easily defeated by the slightest of life’s moments. Walking through life at times with a cloud, it would seem, hanging above him, forecasting that the next bend in the road will bring…oh well…why even go.

Owl arrogantly asserts that he knows the answer to whatever problem the inhabitants of the Hundred-Acre Wood might face.

Piglet is anxious about almost everything that is a part of any of his days, and no amount of encouragement from his woodland friends can seem to quell his shaking nerves.

Rabbit diligently works the crops in his fields—missing out on relationship moments with others.

And of course Tigger, without a care in world, bounds with a sense of wonder into problem after problem with no hope for extrication—save for the gentle hand and loving heart of Christopher Robin.

And Christopher Robin, the one who was always readily at hand to encourage his little friends however slightly discouraged they were at times, or slightly self-centered, resigned to whatever, or locked in their self-imposed sense of fate or busyness. He was always there to restore their bruised and flickering hearts to the sunshine of a better and brighter day.

Not at all like some of the places we have found ourselves every now and then—perhaps just a little bit bruised, a little bit uncertain, confused, lost, discouraged or worried. And perhaps not Christopher Robin, but instead we find that the One of whom Isaiah spoke, is there for us in those moments.

There for us, to lean into the One who came not with criticism or disregard for the weak or uncertain, the confused, lost, discouraged or concerned—the bruised and bent reeds of this world—but who came with understanding and love. The One—Jesus Christ—who came not to extinguish our weak and flickering flames of hope, but to heal and restore them, and nurse them back to being clearer and stronger, bright, burning and shining lights.

The One who will always be there for us—no matter what we face, in whatever season of life we find ourselves, and no matter what the next bend in the road holds for us.

Christopher Robin for Winnie the Pooh and his lovable friends—Jesus Christ for me and, dare I say, for you.

In His Name—Scott

Copyright 2013. Scott L. Whitaker. All rights reserved.