Thought of the Week
Years ago, a popular wayside pulpit poster outside churches read “If God seems far away, guess who moved?” God, who created all of life, including you and me, never moves. He’s always with us, even if we don’t know it, and his love for us never wavers, never ends. He never changes, He’s always the same. In the Bible, we read that he told his people “I the Lord do not change” (Malachi 3:6). So if I feel that God is no longer with me, if I feel that He is far away, the meaning of the poster is that it is I who has moved, and in order to move away from Him, I have turned my back on Him. Why does that sometimes happen? Simply because of sin in our lives. When we think of sin, we think of the big, obvious things, like murder, stealing, violence. But sin can be feelings too - pride, anger, envy. Sin is anything which comes between us and God - thoughts, feelings, or actions. When God created you and me, He did it so that we could have a close, loving relationship with Him. He still wants that, but first we have to deal with the sin in our lives, we have to repent. The dictionary definition of repent is to feel or express sincere regret or remorse about our wrongdoing, or sin. The Biblical meaning, however, is more than that. It means a personal, unconditional surrender to God. It includes sorrow and regret, but to repent, I must make a complete change of direction (180° turn) in my life, toward God. I must turn my back on the sin, face Him once again, and start to move towards Him, resolving never to return to that sin again. Our relationship is restored. Sometimes this is very hard to do, but our gracious God will help us, if we ask him, and if we allow Him to do.