Following Jesus is a bit like a walk in the woods. Everything is going great, birds are singing, the sun is shining, but then things begin to shift. The path thins out. Clouds roll in. It starts to rain. Then hail. Perhaps your foot slips into an icy brook. Or you trip on a root and sprain your wrist. Worry, fear, anger, resentment, despair (old friends) quickly come to our aid, sinking us deeper. Lost and empty, we cry out, God! Help me!
In such moments, Francis Spufford writes in his book, Unapologetic, “Well, we’ve arrived at God.”
We tend to squander the arrival – the opportunity to commune with the living God. Despite our deep need for Jesus, we hit the pitfalls of “self-pity, self-preoccupation, [and] giving up,” notes Sarah Young in her devotional, “Jesus Calling” (Feb 22).
Young continues, speaking for Jesus, “The emptiness you feel within will be filled either with problems or with My Presence.”
We choose problems! We cherish our old friends, cuddle them, commiserate with them versus communing with God. We’re so used to doing things for ourselves, solving our own problems, we forget the jars of clay that we are and the surpassing power of God that Paul so frequently writes about.
Silence – allowing us to shift our thoughts to the things of God who knows exactly what we need is a wonderful beginning. It may not feel wonderful, at first anyway, as our worldly expectations deceive us. In time, the encounter will far exceed even our imaginations, driving us deeper, as God puts His finger on our heart. And then watching Him fill us so completely, so precisely, we can only sing His praises in awe.
Thanks for reading,