I am continually amazed at how loving and gracious God is. God is not distant, but desires to be close and intimate with us. How much it must hurt God when we choose to go our own way. God has sacrificed so much for us, highlighted by the death of His only Son, Jesus, for our sins, so that we can have an intimate, growing, fruitful relationship with Him forever. No matter where we are in our relationship with God, we all tend to turn from Him to some degree, whether it is through guilt, pride, self-pity, anxiety or fear. However the good news is that God is always there for us to run to, if only we trust in Jesus to take our sins away, and the associated effect they have on us, thus refreshing and purifying our relationship with Him.
I have always loved the truth that God meets us where we are at in our lives. Whether we are a professor or janitor, a scholar or illiterate, a non-Christian, new or mature Christian, God cares for all of us just as much and will meet us where we are at if we respond to His call and turn to Him. Jesus challenged Nicodemus, a knowledgeable Pharisee of the Jewish ruling council with the truth “no one can see the kingdom of God unless he is born again” (John 3:3). Later Jesus met an ignorant, outcast, Samaritan woman at a drinking well and told her “Everyone who drinks this water will be thirsty again, but whoever drinks the water I give him will never thirst… a spring of water welling up to eternal life” (John 4:13-14). That ignorant woman tasted Jesus’ ‘water’ and received eternal life! Even when Elijah, a great prophet and messenger of God, fled from Jezebel into the desert out of fear, disobedience and lack of faith, God still went to him. There God fed and nurtured Elijah back to health and then directed his vision back onto the purposes God had for him (1Kings 19:1-18). These truths comfort me so much given I always seem to find ways of turning from and disobeying God.
I get lured away from God’s truth, ensnared by the enemy’s chains of torment, my heart being deeply pierced by his arrows of affliction. But God always meets me where I’m at to effortlessly break those chains and heal my heart through His love, grace and power! I’ve discovered that there’s no bondage that God can’t miraculously break me from, so that I may live in the freedom of His presence and experience His peace and joy amidst the toughest of circumstances. However I know I must choose to turn to God when He calls out, otherwise He will remain a stranger in my heart.
Stop running away…
Where in your life have you turned from God? Do you have a born again relationship with God, through your faith in Jesus? If not, the bible says you won’t be spending eternity in heaven (John 14:6). Is Jesus Lord over all of your life? No doubt we all find this challenging and even frightening, given our sinful nature naturally rebels against God’s will in our lives. It can be such a huge struggle at times! But God has promised to give us the strength to do everything He has called us to do (Philippians 4:13). Let’s own that promise and live our lives in freedom from the sinful rubbish and diversions that entangles us so easily at times. Let’s drink the purifying water Jesus freely gives. Let’s stop running away and discover the new life that Jesus has for us – a life that ripples into eternity.