That’s peculiar. I could have swore I just left you right here, now you’re nowhere to be found.
Out of sight, and thus out of mind. It meant so much to me. I planned my time around you, I made sure you were the #1. In short, I thought you were my life. Where did this start? When did the flame digress? It is truly hard to say, all I know is that you are gone. I can’t find you anymore, and it’s quite troubling.
I’ve heard about this problem arising. In fact, I’ve been warned to look out for it for as long as you mattered to me. But it seems it has finally happened, even when my best intentions were present. It appears that you have become tasteless salt, it appears that you have become a hidden city on a hill, it appears that you have decided to be neither hot nor cold, but rather lukewarm. It appears something is missing. That something is you. Specifically, it is the you that used to have a fire, used to care about where you were going, used to live for your Creator and God. You’ve gone somewhere, and it is hard to come back.
While I am not merely describing a person who is completely lost and walking in darkness (though that very well may be the case). I am also referring to those who are going through a slump. You used to be energetic, used to be excited about your faith, but something has slipped and taken over your time and concern. Maybe it is that you have been raised your entire life in a family/atmosphere that has a “spiritual” mindset, and though it is all you’ve known, you seem to lack a passion of finding that spark for yourself. Or possibly, as I disclaimed before, you have lost your way. You are in that group of individuals that have known Christ’s mercy, but have traded it in again for lustful passions. Hebrews 6:6 describes these as “impossible to renew” seeing that it is a daunting task, but if you are still searching for you, that means there is still hope.
While I will be the very first to state that there are far better pieces of advice out there regarding this topic, I still find this topic to be of utmost importance. The thought came to me while the teens and I were going over the life of Abraham; the man and father of faith and obedience, no less. Yet even this man on a pedestal seemed to stumble from time to time. While I am in no place to say he fell from God’s grace, we do still see him take God’s promises into his own hands by trying to fulfill them himself (e.g. Hagar). We see him also leave the country He was sent to dwell in by God, and sojourn into a land where he was willing to tell half-truths and compromise his wife’s dignity (twice, nonetheless – Ch. 12 and 20). While there are many other examples and verses we can look to, I want us to particularly notice what it was that Abraham did in response to these short comings. We see that every time these occurred, he would turn back in obedience to the Lord. He would follow His commands and instructions. Then what would follow almost every time was God reiterating His promise for Abraham. The promise was specifically that God would provide him with a great nation, thus a child. This was what kept Abraham going, kept him believing, kept him obeying.
Sometimes when we feel like we’ve slowly drifted away, it is because we have been holding onto the uplifting and “spiritual highs” that God’s grace gives us. But when the rubber hits the road, sometimes we feel inadequate to do our part. How do you get that spark back? How do you find that love for God in your life? First things first, Abraham followed what God said. Not always fun or easy, but it is where he started. Also getting re-energized and encouraged by God’s promises for us is not a bad idea either. Look to God’s word, but specifically look to Christ’s sacrifice and love for us, and our hope and promise that we can live and be loved by Him for all eternity. This isn’t always an easy task, that’s the fragile nature of losing something that you used to know and care for. But with the decision to turn to Him, with the encouragement of His promises, and with the love and attention from brothers and sisters in Christ, that you who was missing, can be found again.
“Yet even now,” declares the LORD, “Return to Me with all your heart, And with fasting, weeping and mourning; And rend your heart and not your garments.” Now return to the LORD your God, For He is gracious and compassionate, Slow to anger, abounding in lovingkindness And relenting of evil.” – Joel 2:12-13
P.S. The Lumineer’s new song Ophelia is absolutely fantastic! I can’t wait to hear and review their new album in April. But for now, go check out the single.