February 27, 2005 ()

Bible Text: |

The Journey is the same for each one of us. I encounter Jesus Christ. I catch a glimpse of His holiness and it forces me to see my sin, my shame and I pull away. Then I experience His embrace, he loves me, he accepts me right where I am, so I join him in the dance.

He sweeps me off my feet and I realize for the moment that it isn’t up to me. I can rest in His grace. I can trust in His cleansing. And oh, it is so good. . . . But then it’s gone.

No, He doesn’t leave me. He doesn’t stop dancing, but I become distracted by the things of our world: my relationships, my career, my superficial desires and the pain of my life and I attempt to move by my energy and my strength rather than by His Spirit. The next thing I know, I have crashed again. Only this time, the depth of my fall seems even greater than the first. After all, how could I have danced with God, how could I have accepted His love and grace and still crashed? “O, what a wretched man I am, who will save me?”

Then, once again, I hear his music playing softly in the background. Once again I stop trying to fix myself and allow Him to embrace me with His love. Suddenly, I am dancing again. Only this time, I dance higher and faster and more gracefully than ever.

I become intoxicated by his love. Nothing else compares. But then, once again, I lose focus. This time I become so absorbed in watching my own dance that I step outside myself and look in awe at the beauty of my movements, forgetting who is in the lead. Immediately I begin to stumble so I work harder and yet stumble more.

Frantically I attempt to regain my beauty, but the harder I try, the more I fail. The harder I try the uglier it gets. Finally, my failure is obvious, not merely to myself, but to everyone and the pain overwhelms me. How could I have failed so miserably? All I had to do was follow His lead. All I had to do was to flow with His movement and His Spirit.

Then, while I’m on the floor kicking myself, I stop my blubbering just long enough to hear the music still playing softly. When I look up, to my utter amazement, I see His hand reaching for me, inviting me to dance again.

“But, Jesus, I failed so miserably. I’m afraid I’ll fail again.”

He answers: “My blood covers your failure, so why do you fear failure?”

Then, He holds out his hand and we resume the dance.

Such is the Spiritual Journey. Can you relate? Can you hope this is really true? Do you long for such acceptance and grace.

Then Join us in the dance. Join us in the journey!