December 22, 2019

Start With God

   People sometimes ask, “what is the secret to having a vital connection with God?”  It is a good question and I appreciate those who ask it.  It   suggests that they possess a sense that is more to faith than church attendance and a keeping of the rules.  Like the rich, young ruler of Luke 8, they feel compelled to ask, “What lack I yet?”  Interestingly, that young noble asked that question after doing everything that the Law and established tradition demanded.  Perhaps this was the reason Jesus “loved him.”  He also sensed that there was more to faith than a determined religious tradition.  

So, how should we reply to that question.  It might surprise you.  A vital relationship with God starts with God!  Just to be sure you get the point, that vital connection with God doesn’t start with my  deficiencies, my fears, my insecurities or my guilt— although all of those are real issues and concerns.  Instead, it starts with God and His overwhelming presence and glory.  It starts with an intoxicating awareness that possessing Him would dwarf any other blessing I might possibly desire and He might willingly give.  Just connecting with Him is the most sublime proposition.  It fills me beyond imagination.  It consumes me. 

That is one reason this time of year brightens my day.  It isn’t so much an awareness of the fact of Christ’s birth, but rather it is the wonder of it as God burst upon our reality and intervenes in our lives so that we can possess and explore the possibilities inherent in a relationship with Him.  Prior to His coming, we interacted with His Law and Judgment.  We trembled before His Wrath, but now He is personal, He has lived among us.  He has adopted us as His children.  The whole relationship is about Him and His good will towards us, not our undisputed brokenness.  Yes, we remain grossly unworthy of His Glory, but He embraces us anyway. 

This week, as we come together with friends and family in remembrance of Him, make it a point to make HIM the main attraction.  HE has called us out of our darkness and HE fills our life with meaning.  As a child of God, I have a new answer to the young noble’s inquiry… “What Lack I Yet?” The answer is:  not a single thing!  I hope that is your sentiment as we look forward to a new year lived in His Presence

Paul Dawson