How close do I walk to God? That question seems vague when speaking of the Great I Am. How is it possible for me to be close to...everything? I was led to ask myself this question today when Allen told me that a student from our previous youth ministry finally finished her battle with cancer and went home to be with Jesus. It was evident from reading her facebook page that she knew it was coming and she was ready to go home.
I was thinking earlier this week on contentment and I can't help but think that maybe this closeness to God I am wanting comes from a deep satisfaction in my relationship with Him. I believe that when I am deeply satisfied with who God is in my life I will truly see this life through eternal eyes. Paul wrote about contentment while sitting in a prison cell. He wrote in Philippians 4 that he had discovered the secret to contentment was remembering in whom we have put our trust. Again, remembering that we are not of this world. Remembering that we bear the mark of something greater. When I read that chapter I find myself crying out to God to please make me like that. I want to be so close to Jesus that I don't care what this world brings to me. Paul was close to God...very close and yet he was human. He must have struggled with anger, fear and worry. He must have, at some point while sitting in that prison cell, contemplated life before his conversion and wondered if it might be better than this. Yet, he rejoices in his suffering because he has discovered that there is no greater satisfaction than trusting Jesus with his life.
No greater satisfaction.
This world creates a constant war in my heart. I know what those moments of complete satisfaction in Christ feel like. In those moments, going home to Heaven one day sounds good to me and I have perspective. It is in all the other moments that I struggle to feel that contentment in my heart and remember that I have placed my life in His hands and being close to Him is all there is that matters in life. I know that with every step I take towards Jesus, I forget my fear and worry about this life that seems so important. I become hungry for Him. So hungry that I want to be as close as possible...so close that this Earthly home loses it's value to me.
That secret to contentment Paul talks about is remembering to trust Jesus. If we are surrendered to Jesus and trust him with all of our life then satisfaction will be a by-product, and satisfaction in Him will bring me closer to Him. When we find ourselves discontent with this life it is because we have forgotten in whom we have trusted. Jesus has made a way for me to be close again. I can not only be satisfied with Him but I can feel His satisfaction with me. Jesus has given me life I could never find on this Earth. The freedom I find in being content with Jesus can never be manufactured in this human life. We will exhaust ourselves trying to satisfy the hungers of our flesh. The flesh cannot be satisfied...but the spirit...the spirit can be made whole and complete and when I walk in the spirit I am content and I am close to my Savior.
I encourage you to seek out satisfaction in Jesus. Just as Paul did, when we daily learn to trust Jesus with our lives we find peace and contentment. Jesus desperately loves you and me. He does not want to be far from you. He wants to be close. He made that clear to us in His death and resurrection. He is satisfied with you. He yearns for you. Trust Him with your life and He will not quit pursuing you. Choose to make Heaven your home and make this your temporary dwelling.
"But we are citizens of Heaven, where the Lord Jesus Christ lives. And we are eagerly waiting for Him to return as our Savior." Philippians 3:20