Monday, December 7, 2009
The Great Pursuit
I have been meditating on something lately. It seems every verse I read, every song I hear and every sermon I listen to has some, if not all the elements of what has been moving in and around my heart. Simply it is this:
GOD IS WILDLY IN LOVE WITH EACH OF US!!
Even though we are diseased with sin and smelly with the taint of the world within which we must reside - HE loves us - you and me - He LOVES US!
Now, here is the kicker. For me, it is hard to wrap my mind around the fact that God loves me so much that He is patiently pursing a relationship with me, that He actually does want to hear my voice, and see my face, and be near me constantly. I know that my husband loves me, and he did pursue me till I actually said yes to him, but it is no way even close to the love affair that God wants to have with me and you.
In the world we live in, that kind of passionate love just is not seen. Sure, we can watch stuff on the movies and snicker behind our hand about how unrealistic is it for "that guy" to chase "that girl" - and depending on whether or not we are watching a love story or a stalker movie, we comfortably leave the theater knowing that in real life it just does not happen like that. We may sigh and long for it, but we are totally grounded people who know it "ain't" gonna happen. Or will it?
So, where is this going. For born again believers, those who have truly said yes to Jesus, we know that pursuit in a small way. We say yes, and then forget that Jesus wants more than just a moment in our histories that ends with bowed heads and an amen. He wants us to love Him back, in essence be wildly, madly in love with Him as a person, to receive His love in the tangible peace and joy and expression of the knowledge that He is intimate with the very substance of our soul and spirit.
Let's put this in perspective. Imagine this for a moment. You are walking along and fall into the nastiest septic tank there is. You get up and you are saturated with all the muck, refuse and waste from the top of your head to the bottom of your feet. Not only that, but due to the toxic nature of that particular septic system, a smell like sulfur and rot immediately permeates and infuses every pore in your body. Our spouses would probably get a trailer to put us on it to take us home and let us shower and get "prettified". Anyone else would walk a wide berth around us, shake their heads, and say, "poor thing!" and walk on their merry way. Here is what Jesus would do.
He would help us up, kiss our hands, wipe away our tears, hold us close. He would minister to any cuts we might have received when we fell, call us "Beloved". He would then take us to the nicest restaurant in town, dine us in the candle light and look lovingly into our eyes. He would pull us close and slow dance with a love song that He Himself wrote. He would tell us how beautiful we are, and would look at us with total joy of just being able to hold us. All this with the muck and stink of the sewer on us.
Don't believe me? He does it every day. As soon as we accept how much He loves us and let Him know by turning to Him and saying "Yes", He cleans us and throws away the old clothes we are wearing and gives us His robe of His righteousness. Most of us stop at "taking His hand" and don't let Him woo us the way He wants to. He wants to be a part of every moment, joy or heart ache. He wants to hold us when we are alone, calm us when we are afraid, and clean us back up when we fall. How amazing is that!
The world we live in is the sewer. Our sins are the stink. Jesus is our only hope to be healed and whole and clean. We can not wash enough, pray enough, confess enough on our own. We can do all kinds of good things, go to the right places and say the right things. Without Jesus, we still stink, the rot is us decaying each day. The eventuality is death.
So how do I know this? Here are some Words He has written to us in His love letter to mankind:
Jeremiah 31:3 The LORD appeared to us in the past, saying: "I have loved you with an everlasting love; I have drawn you with loving-kindness. (the whole chapter, if you can. it truly is words of redeeming love and future hope.)
John 3:16 "For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.
I in them and you in me. May they be brought to complete unity to let the world know that you sent me and have loved them even as you have loved me.
1 John 4:10 This is love: not that we loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as an atoning sacrifice for our sins.
The Bible as a whole is God's reminder to each of us of His pursuit. Never doubt He loves us. Now go tell someone so that the great pursuit can continue.
Father, I pray that each of us would truly understand the vastness of Your love for each one of us. Help me to learn how to pursuit You with a passion to know You more. I love you. Amen