By Keith Chandler, Journey Christian Church
When my children were young, we’d go to the pool and play that game where Dad stands a few feet from the side in chest-deep water, and tries to convince the kids to jump to him. From the father’s perspective, there’s zero risk to this game, but you wouldn’t know it by watching the kids quiver on the deck.
“Jump!“ I would say.
“Daddy? Will you catch me?”
“Yes! Trust me! Just jump.”
“When you jump, then I’ll catch you. But I can’t prove that I’ll catch you until you jump!”
As grown-ups who can stand in a few feet of water; we laugh at the little kids cowering on the pool deck. But let’s be honest: jumping can be a scary business.
Especially when we’re not entirely certain Daddy’s going to catch us.
Let’s talk about our heavenly father.
What things do we fear when it comes to trusting Him? Maybe we’re afraid because we’re convinced God’s angry with us and wants to punish us. Maybe he wants to teach us a lesson by letting us hit the water and go under. Maybe our fears are simply based on our desire for pleasure and comfort.
What will God call us to do if we decide to take that leap? Or maybe our fear is exactly the same as the one perched on the side of the pool: we’re afraid Daddy isn’t gonna catch us. But the Bible says perfect love drives out fear.
So how do we get past it? When you seem far away it’s harder to jump. As a father, I gradually moved toward them. That’s the same approach God has taken with us through the ages. After the fall, God began to draw closer to us again.
At first, he was a voice beyond the clouds, then a visible pillar of fire and a massive cloud leading them through the wilderness. Next, he came to the people in the Tabernacle and later the Temple.
When they still didn’t get it, he came so close that he was human—Jesus! But then he said, “I’ll get even closer. I’ll unleash the transformative power of my Spirit to change you from the inside out.”
With every step closer, God proved his love for us. God deserves our trust but we still have to step off the edge. God stands ever so close and says, “When you jump, then I’ll catch you. But I can’t prove it until you jump.”
Continued next month,