September 1, 2021 — Is Longing Enough?

“I was reminded of a lesson for my faith walk last night,” Stan said, “when I went to the freezer to get some ice cream.”

“How could that be?” I asked. “What about ice cream could have any impact on your faith walk?”

“There wasn’t any,” Stan replied.

“Wasn’t any what?”

“Ice cream. It was all gone. And that’s where the reminder began.”

“How so?” I asked.

“The more I thought about ice cream,” Stan replied, “the more I longed for it. I just couldn’t get it out of my mind.”

“And then what?”

“I finally got in the car and drove down to George’s Grocery. I bought a carton of vanilla ice cream and some chocolate sauce just in case we were also out of that.”

“And where did the part about your faith walk come in?” I asked.

“Longing for some ice cream didn’t put any ice cream in a bowl,” Stan said. “I had to go and get some.  Same thing with my relationship with God.  I could spend my entire life longing to know that I will spend eternity with Him when my time here is done, but until I did something with that longing, that’s all that it was, longing.”

“You changed that longing into reality by accepting God’s free and gracious provision of life eternally with Him, is that the point?”

“Exactly,” Stan replied. “As well, I can sit around all day longing to have a deeper relationship with God, but longing is not going to get it done. I have to do something with that longing.”

“Oh, I see,” I responded. “It’s kind of like what the apostle James wrote in his letter about drawing near to God. If I choose to draw near to God, He will respond and draw near to me.”

“That’s it,” Stan said. “I could spend my entire life longing for a deeper relationship with God, but until I choose to put feet to that longing, until I choose to draw near to Him, not much is going to happen with that longing. Longing without more is not enough!”

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Bible verses to consider:

Draw near to God and He will draw near to you. James 4:8

The Lord is  with you when you are with Him. And if you seek Him, He will let you find Him; but if you forsake Him, He will forsake you. 2 Chronicles 15:2.

Ask, and it shall be given to you; seek, and you shall find; knock, and it shall be opened to you. For every one who asks receives, and he who seeks finds, and to him who knocks it shall be opened. Matthew 7:7-8.

Therefore the Lord longs to be gracious to you, and therefore He waits on high to have compassion on you. For the Lord is a God of justice; how blessed are those who long for Him. Isaiah 30:18.

Prayer: Thank you, Father, for the truth that you draw near to me when I choose to draw near to you. I confess that too often I say that I long to have a deeper relationship with you without doing anything about that longing. Please help me in following every step of your lead into the deepest possible relationship with you. Please help me to move beyond longing to satisfying that longing. Thank you I can and do bring these prayers before you in the name of Jesus. Amen.

Think on this: Have you gone beyond longing to know you will spend eternity in God’s presence by having accepted by faith His free and gracious provision? If no, why? Do you not realize that merely longing for life eternally in His presence is not going to get it done? If you have the assurance of salvation, how are you doing on this side of eternity? Do you long for a deeper relationship with God? If no, why? If you do long for a deeper relationship, what are you doing  to satisfy that longing? If you sense some changes are in order, how are those changes going to happen?

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The book: Waiting for the Train — Biblical food for growing before going. For information, see http://www.s-toryteller.com

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