There are times when I amaze myself with my own idiocy. I am passionately in love with Jesus Christ, and I am intimately aware of his sacrifice and love for me. My deepest desire is to live a life that looks like the life He lived, the life He intended me to live. Yet I find it so easy to lose track of what I’m doing or where I’m going. I have a relationship with the Creator of the Universe and I fail to seek Him or even recognize Him in every moment of my life. Between you and me, we can probably come up with a dozen theological or “churchy” terms for this, but I can’t escape from the knowledge that at its core, it is plain stupidity. I remember reading James 1:23-24 in the past, where the man looks at his face in the mirror and then immediately forgets what he looks like; my immediate thought was, “well, that’s pretty stupid”. I now recognize that I am that man. I am vividly aware of who I am in Christ one moment, and totally forget about Him the next. No matter how hard I try to keep Him consciously in sight, it seems inevitable that I will eventually lose focus and fall again. It is a paradox I could live without.
I have written before about Greg Boyd’s book, “Present Perfect”, and how it deals with being intentionally aware of Jesus in each moment of our lives. This is where we need to be. I realize I need to stop trying to see God in every moment and instead relax in His presence each moment, being fully aware that He is indeed with me. There is power in letting go, power in ceasing to strive, power in simply releasing ourselves from our futile attempts to know Him more. We cannot know more of Him by our own efforts, but only by allowing Him to reveal more of Himself to us. Jesus is beside us – literally – in every moment of our lives. Each moment you are tempted to fall away, each time you have a thought that is not worthy of God, remind yourself that Jesus is with you, right here, and right now.
The only way we can become the person we were created to be is if we acknowledge His presence in our lives on a moment by moment basis. I know from my brief encounters of success in this endeavor that doing this will be hard work. As with most difficult achievements, however, the reward is intensely sweet. Being awake, or aware, of God’s presence in each moment will lead to our awareness of Him in each day, in each week and in each year. Slowly, purposefully, we will build a life that is spent in the utter peace of the presence of Christ. Then we will truly be able to say that we ran a good race. Nothing else we accomplish in life will compare to staying awake to the presence of our Lord. From this, a life lived well for Him will flow. As we remain in His presence and allow His love to shine through us, we will do great things for Him. They may or may not be noteworthy acts by the world’s measure, but they will be acts of great love, kindness, and compassion. Our lives will reflect the will of Jesus, and there is nothing more beautiful or satisfying than a life that looks like His.
We were not created to be idiots; we were not created to fail. Jesus put his unique stamp on every one of us, and He has placed a desire within us to follow Him. We can never succeed on our own. It is only by the grace and love of God that we can become who He created us to be. The only way to get from where we are to where He waits is to let go, relinquish control, and stop striving for that which we already possess. He is already in this moment; we need only recognize it and open our eyes. As we allow ourselves to see the reality of His presence in each second of our lives, we will begin to change. We will reflect His love and we will be transformed. Lord, save us from our idiocy; open our eyes to the reality of Your presence, and let us walk each moment in total awareness that You are with us every step of the way. You surround us with Your love. Let us ache to reflect Your glory to a world desperate and thirsty for You.