Saturday, July 15, 2006

Draw Near

I've been to watch Superman Returns today and had a great time. I've mentioned before in previous blog entries how various elements of the Superman story have been useful allegories in understanding various things god has said to me.

As I have testified recently, the Christian walk can often seem to be a lonely one... but feeling lonely is very different from being alone. We will always have Jesus Christ to mediate for us:

"Then Jesus came to them and said, "All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age." - Matthew 28:18-20

....and we will always have the Holy Spirit to administer to us:

"If you love me, you will obey what I command. And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another Counselor to be with you forever— the Spirit of truth. The world cannot accept him, because it neither sees him nor knows him. But you know him, for he lives with you and will be in you. I will not leave you as orphans; I will come to you. Before long, the world will not see me anymore, but you will see me. Because I live, you also will live. On that day you will realize that I am in my Father, and you are in me, and I am in you." John 14:15-20

"All this I have spoken while still with you. But the Counselor, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, will teach you all things and will remind you of everything I have said to you. Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid." John 14:25-27

There's a line at the end of Superman Returns that sums this up for me a great deal:

"You will be different, sometimes you'll feel like an outcast, but you'll never be alone. You will make my strength your own. You will see my life through your eyes, as your life will be seen through mine. The son becomes the father and the father becomes the son."

This is how we draw strength from our God. We have to be completely absorbed in his presence. One of my favourite analogies of how Christians should be is that of a sponge. When a sponge is fully immersed in water, you cannot tell where the sponge begins and the water stops. Is the sponge in the water... or is the water in the sponge? The answer of course is both. This is at heart what Jesus means when he says that we are in Him and He is in us.

The things we read about him doing, the attitudes that shaped his actions... we need to take these on. We need to perceive the World through Christ's eyes, because as his ambassadors he certainly see's the World through ours. By seeking to become more Christlike in nature... we challenge ourselves to become vessels of His blessing. If we draw strength from God there can be healing for the sick, the blind can receive back their sight, the prisoners shall be set free and the dead can be raised. Take those statements as literally or symbolically as you wish but both are true in the power and name of Jesus Christ.

The simple truth is that God... because He is our Father, desires for us to become like his one and only begotten Son. The son becomes the father and the father becomes the son. The only way for that to happen is if we invite him into our hearts... to the very centre of our domain.

I'm going to ask you one question, leave you with one challenge:

Imagine your heart is like a big house, it has public areas, private areas, it has functional areas, recreational areas. The question is this... in this house, where is Jesus?

Is he on your doorstep, still waiting to be let in? I urge and encourage you to invite him into your heart and welcome him as Lord.

Is he in the hallway... a cautiously welcomed guest who is still wearing his coat? I encourage you to begin to trust Him through prayer and bring him to the centre of your world.

"Ok" those of you who are mature in faith may be thinking... "Jesus is in my living room... that's cool, I'm fine". So Jesus is welcome in your household... but what about your bedroom... is it a tip (like my real one) that you are ashamed to let others look upon. Are you still serving up microwave ready meals from your kitchen where the appliances are unused, but the bins overflow with microwave dinners? Lets not go to the toilet for pities sake!

What I am urging you to do is look at those areas of your life that bring you shame... that you don't use, or are uncomfortable with... and let Jesus loose. He will clean up your mess and he will serve the finest of spiritual food. Just let him do what he wants to. Call on him and see if he will not rise to action?

Do it today!



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