“But now in Christ Jesus you who once were far away have been brought near through the blood of Christ.” Eph 2:13 (NIV)
I remember one of my childhood family vacations in Florida when my dad decided that we needed to experience the freedom that sailing brings. He had never been on a sailboat before. However, the longer my brother and I played on the beach, the more time my dad had to stare at the sailboats nearby. He convinced my mom that this would be a memorable exploration for our family to enjoy.
After a few minutes of instruction from the sailboat renter, we were charting new waters. My dad was the captain and my mom, brother, and I were the captive audience. The first hour was fun in the sun. Then, darkness came upon the sea rapidly. We were abruptly entangled in a massive storm that made the waters turbulent. The most frightening part of the adventure was the reality that the beach became smaller and smaller. Before long, my whole family was in panic mode, including the captain! I thought we were fashioning our final memory as a family unit. Fortunately, the sailboat renter came to our rescue. If he hadn’t, I don’t know that I would be here today.
It is a frightening reality to be far from God. There is not a darker or more isolated experience than that of being far from God. The truth is that every Christ follower was once far from God. The wonderful and liberating news is that we have been brought near. God took the initiative to mobilize His rescue package. He provided the atoning work of Jesus on the cross to bring us near.
“In him we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins, in accordance with the riches of God’s grace that he lavished on us with all wisdom and understanding.” Eph 1:7-8 (NIV)
Contemplate the desperation of being far from God. Look into the mirror first and get an honest glimpse of your proximity to God. Then, make yourself available today to be an agent to bring others near to God.
Pastor of Leadership and Pastoral Care