For the past month or so I’ve been moved by the relentless pursuit of God towards humanity. Not just His pursuit of humanity in general, but the way He pursues every human individually. So often the focus of my spiritual life has been trying to gain wisdom and knowledge that removes more of me so I can become closer to Christ. I search the dusty hollows Christian classics hoping to gleam some insights of those spiritual giants. I attempt to mimic their behaviors in hopes to have their faith. I beat myself with the self-flagellation of self hatred because of inabilities and failures in these pursuits. When I fail, I run to new books, videos, blogs and podcasts hoping to hear the newest and greatest ways to get close to God. I go to church like a drugie visits his dealer hoping and expecting to get the newest high. When my pastor or church doesn’t deliver and the new book I’m reading doesn’t give me the direction on how to fix my situation I am quick to place blame on what’s not right.
Enter in, Emmanuel.
Nothing in human experience or imagination could prepare us for the way God gloriously eases into creation as a baby wrapped in swaddling clothes and lying in a manger. Rich Mullins said once regarding the Bible, “If we were given the scriptures it was not so we could prove we were right about everything, if we were given the scriptures it was to humble us in to realizing that God is right and the rest of us were just guessing.” The Bible at its heart is a story. It’s a story about human beings striving for perfection, along the way hurting each other, making pain and heartache part of the human experience. In the story there is a divine father who pursues them from on high, from within and side-by-side. He stops at nothing to rescue them from their ceaseless striving and to bring them to Himself. Even when He is given reason to abandon His search, He is undeterred from this pursuit. In the end, regardless of the failed attempts of man, God still seeks and finds them in a way only he can, and brings them to the warming fire of His love to enjoy friendship with Him.
My pursuits of God are as failing today as when I was young, but God’s pursuit of me has been as unfettered and passion driven as the day he knit me in my mothers womb.
Enjoy this incredible song by Andy Gullahorn and Jill Phillips, it is what first brought this obvious insight to me. I have listened to it daily and like all good art, it only intensifies the more I’ve encountered it.