How many of you have wondered, thought of or longed for “that” meeting with Jesus? I’ve often wondered that if I was alive when Jesus walked this earth, would I have been one of his followers? I don’t really know, there are a lot of “if’s” involved. I’d like to think so. God knows that it took many years for me to get to where I am today and I still have a good way to go.
When I read the Bible I try to picture myself there, hearing Jesus speak, absorbing what truth He is telling us. It’s not always easy. I’ve been to Jerusalem, years ago, I can still smell the air when I close my eyes. I walked around the entire city of Jerusalem so at some point I had to have walked over the exact place where Jesus walked. True, it could be a few or many feet directly below, but I’ve been in that space. It’s raw and real, to this very day. But Jesus wasn’t there when I walked around the city. Not then, not now, It’s Him that I have always looked for, back then and even now.
I’ve learned that it’s not enough to be intellectually convinced of His reality. That only takes you so far. That’s because He doesn’t just want your mind, what He really wants is your heart. The core of your being, the real spiritual you that is deep within this body we wear. I’ve learned that there are many who just don’t want to believe, not because of insufficient evidence, but because of the implications. And pride plays a huge role in that decision. Pride is why it took me so long to get to where I am today.
Proverbs 23:26 NIV “My son, give me your heart and let your eyes delight in my ways”
When I became a Christian I had a real problem with alcohol, so much so that I needed it to sleep at night. I had lost control. It wasn’t pretty because there was more than alcohol that was wrong in my life. If ever there was someone who was lost, it was me. I used to picture myself sleeping at the feet of Jesus, to get me through the nights when I stopped drinking. And He freed me from alcohol yet I still held onto some of the lifestyle decisions. It was the lifestyle decisions that took me so long to get rid of. Evidently I am a slow learner.
Walking with Jesus is not something that you can do in segments, or partially. The communion in fellowship aspect of connecting with God doesn’t work that way.
With regard to making a decision about Jesus, I often use the analogy of deciding to jump into the pool when learning to swim. Some people don’t like that analogy because they think that it means they disconnect their brain but your brain can only take you so far. There’s nothing wrong in studying the evidence, nothing at all, in fact the scriptures encourage us to do so, but the evidence is supposed to lead you to the diving board, it leads you to jumping in the pool, to trusting in God.
My question is, how much evidence is enough, or is continually investigating more and more evidence and needing to understand all knowledge, your mechanism of choice for avoidance, for not getting on the diving board, for not making a decision? Please understand, that decision is a decision in itself. If Jesus is who He said He is, sooner or later we have to make a decision on what happens next with regard to our response. Not making a decision is a decision in itself.
I am totally convinced that it is not a lack of evidence for the reality of God, be it with regard to creation and all the wonders that are now unfolding therein, or lack of evidence with regard to the validity of the Scriptures or lack of evidence that Jesus was and is the Son of God, or lack of evidence that He literally rose from the dead that stops some people from becoming believers, but it is just out and out pride. It’s the implication of letting go of the reins, putting God truly in the drivers seat that stops them. “I will” versus letting the “I Am” of the Christian scriptures. Echo’s of Eden?
But of course, I thought I knew better, thought I could still steer the ship so to speak. Kind of like having one person trying to drive two cars at the same time. Short story is you can’t, you have to be in one car or the other. Two cars where not initially designed to be driven by one driver. One car for me and another for Jesus. Some things my way and some things His way. There’s your house divided. Mark 3:25 NIV “If a house is divided against itself, that house cannot stand.”
And even if you go to the one car analogy, the problem is that we keep ourselves in the driver’s seat and we continue to steer our life where we think we want it to go. Wrong again. Sometimes we have to go down that long road quite a ways before we come to the realization that the problem is us. That’s the slow learner part.
I thought that I had Jesus in my car, had Him with me, albeit as a passenger. Wrong again. Jesus doesn’t do the passenger thing. Never has, never will. That’s why Jesus asks us to be yoked to Him. He leads, He sustains, He plots the course.
Through the grace of God I have tasted what it is like to be in the presence of God. Key word being “tasted”. That would be like “small samples”. And they are precious, the most precious moments of my life. All true Christians have these precious moments, they are unique, just between you and our Lord. I’ve said before that God does not have any grandchildren, you can’t inherit entrance into the Kingdom of God, it has to be between you and Him, one on one, personal.
I can’t imagine what it will be like to look upon the face of Jesus for the first time. I just know it’s where I am supposed to be, I will be home, with Him and as a bonus I will get to meet so many of God’s people for the first time AND meet again those Christians who have died that I came to know in this life. Sometimes life seems so short and in reality, as you hit your twilight years, it surely seems that way, and I do have regrets that I did not learn and understand sooner, but I am so grateful that He broke through, grateful that I have given Him my life to direct and plot out the remaining time He will give me, grateful that He knows I long to see His face, to meet Him who my heart yearns for.
Psalm 37:5-6 (KJV) “Commit thy way unto the Lord; trust also in him; and he shall bring it to pass. And he shall bring forth thy righteousness as the light, and thy judgment as the noonday.”
Worthy is the Lamb! Blessings!