May 6, 2010
There is nothing I can do to get to God on my own, but Christ offers a bridge from me to Him. It isn’t complicated. God is like the sun, which is so bright I cannot look at it directly or I will be blinded. God is too much for me to take in on my own, and I cannot be in His presence without first going through His Son Jesus Christ. Jesus is like the moon which reflects sunlight in a way that enables my eyes to see it. I love to stare at the moon; it is the most peaceful light in the world to me. Christ’s love is the most beautiful love in the world because He brings God’s love to me in a way I can understand. God loved us so much that He became one of us so we could love Him and share that love with others.
I want to be in God’s presence and love Him, but my heart just can’t take it. That is where Jesus comes in; He died on the cross so I could experience God’s love. When I love Jesus and understand and accept the forgiveness of the cross, I can embrace God’s love and receive His Holy Spirit. God is like the sun; Jesus is like the moon, and the Holy Spirit helps me take it all in. The three are one and work together so I can be in God’s presence and feel His love even before I get to heaven. That is what walking in God’s kingdom is all about. It begins as soon as we accept His love. Heaven is being in God’s presence and being able to love Him directly. That will be more wonderful than I can begin to imagine or describe to you. When we truly love one another, we get a small taste of what heaven will be like. We can walk in His kingdom now and love in a new and beautiful way!
God’s love is unlike any other love because the more it is shared, the more it grows. Sharing God’s love is what a visiting minister was talking about at our revival tonight. I have to show others that sweet glow of God’s love in a way that will make them want what I have. We are called to help each other find, stay in, and grow in God’s love. It’s what this beautiful journey is all about.
The Holy Spirit showed me tonight that the cross is not the destination, but the turning point. The minister drew a diagram on the whiteboard to show that people are at different places when we meet them. I’ve always been afraid to witness to others because I thought I had to get them to the cross in one encounter. That’s as silly as thinking that I have to convince every man I meet to marry me or every woman to be my best friend with one encounter. No wonder I was so nervous when telling others the good news. In seeing what God is doing for me, the Holy Spirit will nudge them and me a little closer to Christ. I just have to let God work in my life and be a loving presence. I also have to let go of my plans and follow His.
Yesterday, as we came down Indian Creek, Mere said that our walks do not seem like exercise at all. I agree; they seem like sharing and loving and caring. Time goes by so quickly, and we are closer to each other and God as we share the path. Exercise is just a wonderful side effect. Witnessing is like walking together and should not feel like exercising. Too many churches and people are exercising and not enjoying the walk together. If Mere and I focused upon getting to the bridge and complained the whole time, the walk would be torture. It would take forever, and we would feel terrible when we finished. Too often, that’s the way we worship and witness when it comes to God. You’ve got to get to the cross; you’ve got to get to the cross! Then what? Well, I’m not sure, but you’ve got to get to the cross! That leaves us and those to whom we witness frustrated, and God’s kingdom doesn’t come on earth as it is in heaven as He desires.
God puts wonderful people in my path to help me find my way. The visiting minister and Pastor John are helping me in a way I can’t put into words except to say that they make the journey so much better by walking alongside me this week, just the way Mere does when we walk together. If I walked eighteen miles all by myself each week, I would get the same amount of exercise, but it would not be a journey; it would be a treadmill. A journey takes you somewhere you have never been and involves sharing the path. If Mere and I complained and fussed about the bugs or the heat or the pace of others in the path, no one would want to walk along with us. In fact, we would discourage those who were thinking of walking. Churches can be like that when they make the journey to God sound like a walk on the treadmill. That breaks God’s heart and mine. If we stop at the cross, we leave people feeling worse than they did before.
The cross is the most important marker on my journey because it is the starting point. If I get lost, I can always go back to the cross. The cross points upward to where Christ is now. As I share the Lord’s Supper, I am reminded of the cross and God’s love. It takes me back to the beginning of my journey and reminds me of the journey Christ took so I could be with God. The journey is about finding holiness, sanctification, and becoming one with God. That’s where churches create a traffic jam because they want to make rules about who can be sanctified and how to be holy. Those are big words that simply mean getting closer to God and doing my best to be like Jesus. The word holy simply means ripe, ready, and mature. I can’t get there by myself, but if I let the Holy Spirit connect me to God’s love, I will bear the fruit of His Spirit and ripen beautifully. I will experience a transformation that is like those butterflies you and I love so very much. I especially want you to remember that everyone can take the journey to the cross and get closer to God. I only have to let the Holy Spirit be my guide. Never let others tell you that you cannot go into God’s presence. It is only those who stop at the cross who want you to stop too. Christ’s resurrection paves the way to God’s presence. Christ is always at God’s side interceding for me. When I love, obey, and trust God, I get to walk in His kingdom.
We are all different, so our journeys are also different. Never feel inferior if you are not like someone you admire or look up to. Pastor John and the visiting pastor are good friends and love God dearly, but they express their love for Him in very different ways. Our differences make a beautiful composite image of Christ. People are attracted to those who love God with abandon. Everyone is searching for love, and that is what sharing the good news of Christ’s love is all about. Each of us have our own special relationship with Christ. God is love, and His Holy Spirit will make our expression of His love unique and beautiful. Christ’s love is indeed precious and perfect, and I know you will grow to love Him and others in a way that helps you see yourself and others as He sees you. That’s what walking in God’s kingdom is all about, and it makes for an amazing journey.
In Christ’s Precious Love, Gigi:)