The week brings a New Year. I feel like it was only a minute ago that we were beginning the last one or the one before. Time seems to be flying quicker and quicker.
Sometimes I think though that as the time flies a flame inside of us quietly dies. The flame of our first love. It’s strange how time does that… how weeks dull the intensity of emotions— good or bad. I wonder if the only way to never loose that first love is to experience it every day?
Maybe the coming new year would be a good year to learn how to do that. To learn to fall in love again. Everyday.
Maybe it’s time to look back over the lessons of the last year and remember, lest they too grow dull… To determine what we want for the year ahead in light of the lessons from the past.
I want to come to Jesus in every struggle instead of waiting until I realize I can never do it alone.
I want to see who He really is. To let Him be Himself instead of trying to be the one in control.
I want to let go of my striving to change my own heart and let Him melt me with His love in ways I couldn’t have predicted or produced.
I want to ask Him what is my part— for His advice— and do it immediately instead of trying all my own ideas.
I want to remember He always always comes before people. That my duty to Him will forever be most important.
I want to see ministry through His eyes. To act on a love like His, not merely a sense of obligation.
I want to open my heart and tell Him about it’s deepest corners.
I want to be completely honest with God 365 days a year.
I want to read my Bible with Him every single day.
I want to immediately give Him any fear or guilt I may have instead of fighting them alone.
I want to live slow and full. To not let the word busy describe my life but instead the word beautiful.
I want to count gifts everyday. To live with hands open and a heart of gratitude.
I want to trust Him.
I want to put Him first in my affections and time. Always.
I want to love Him with every ounce that is in me.
I want to fall in love again every single day.
I want our relationship to be fresh and never stale.
I want to walk with Him like Enoch did.
Whatever it costs me. Whatever treasures He deems must be removed… Whatever plans canceled. Whatever longings unfulfilled by things here that they may be filled with things above. Whatever heartache He knows I must endure to be drawn to His heart…
It’s been burning in me of late… this longing to have nothing but Jesus. To be laid low if it means I can be drawn closer to His feet. To have my heart torn to shreds if those shreds can then be held closer to His own. To walk through the furnace if it can make my love for Him burn hotter. To be stripped of every treasure I posses if that is the way for me to treasure the greatest Treasure of all. To let go of any expectations I may have for this life if I can just have more and more and more of Jesus.
Really, there isn’t time for anything less. There’s a whole world out there dying to know our Jesus. There’s a whole heaven up there aching to have us with them and bring an end to sin and suffering.
New year after new year comes and we have dreams but somehow they don’t always translate into reality. I have to wonder… what is it going to take? How much longer are we going to be here living our life as usual and prolonging the process of sin and death because we aren’t ready? How much longer is His heart going to have to break because He misses us, and He wants us, and He loves us, but we don’t want Him?
Jim Elliot puts it so powerfully… "We are so utterly ordinary, so commonplace, while we profess to know a Power the Twentieth Century does not reckon with. But we are 'armless,' and therefore unharmed. We are spiritual pacifists, non-militants, conscientious objectors in this battle-to-the-death with principalities and powers in high places. Meekness must be had for contact with men, but brass, outspoken boldness is required to take part in the comradeship of the Cross. We are ‘ sideliners' -- coaching and criticizing the real wrestlers while content to sit by and leave the enemies of God unchallenged. The world cannot hate us, we are too much like its own. Oh that God would make us dangerous!”
Oh my soul. Maybe the world too can see when time dulls our first love. Maybe the all of heaven is praying for us to find our first love again.
What if this year everything changed?
What if this year we fell on our knees and begged to see the face of our Jesus?
What if we really did fall in love everyday?
What if we really were His friends, and we really lived like it?
What if we were willing to bear any loss or pain if we could have more of Him?
What if we walked with Him like Enoch did? What if we realized that was possible and it wasn’t just a story in the old testament, it was a story for now and for us? What if we didn’t just talk about it, but we really chose to do it?
I’m pretty sure we could change the world… that He could change the world through us because we walked so close to His heart.
We could be a generation of Enochs.
And maybe in the end it could be said of us…
“And the last generation walked with God. And they were not; for God took them.”