Look to the Lord and his strength; seek his face always.
~ 1 Chronicles 16:11
I will never forget the day I was sitting in Hebrew class at Louisville Presbyterian Theological Seminary and the focus was on the two most common words found in the Hebrew scriptures. One was for the "act of turning away from God." The other, "the act of returning to God."
I think for most of us that day we suddenly realized that these two words still are commonly found in our own actions today. I suddenly began to recall the times when I turned away, and a few times, ran away, from God. It would be in those times I would realize the impact of my decisions and I would find myself asking for God to forgive me, while returning to the place where God wanted me.
Like the experience of the early Hebrew writers, there is really nothing new about how we live today. As I've often shared, there truly is nothing new about the human race.
While we all must live with the choices we have made, the litmus test for those choices should reflect whether God was present, or were we busy turning away from, or returning to God?
Christmas is the time of year that I often think of those who made the journey to visit the Christ child. Angels in their glory, shepherds in their keeping, and wise men in their seeking made their way.
For us today we can find that child within one another. In the way we glorify God, keeping God present in our daily life, and seeking out ways for others to see that child within us.
I am reminded that while we are busy turning away and returning, God is always pursuing. The Psalmist declares, "Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life!" (Psalm 23)
While we may struggle to remain faithful, God is with us always. It is simply up to us to seek the Lord always!
Stay in God's grip!
G. Todd Williams (c) 2017
Rev. G. Todd Williams lives in the Houston metro area and is a Hospice Chaplain at Essential Hospice, Webster, Texas, and is an ordained Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) pastor.