See yourself in a pew as a booming preacher points his finger at the you and the rest of the people saying, “Jesus is the Way! the Truth! the Life! No one comes to the father except by Him! The look on his face lets you know he is serious and you might be in trouble.
Now change the channel in your mind to see Jesus standing on the beach, waves rushing in behind Him, lapping His feet. He is motioning you to join Him on the sand. He’s nodding His head and smiling. You can see Him mouthing the words, “Come on over.” You are pretty sure He is saying something you’ve heard recently. “I am the Way, the Truth, the Life.” The expression on His face tells you, “this Jesus fella acts like hanging out with me will be a great part of His day.”
The first scene causes me to brace myself for the storm that’s surely coming. In it, I feel as if I have less than thirty seconds to decide whether to run for safety or stand there stoically to prove I can take it. Turning the channel in my mind was not a difficult decision.
When I mentally step into the second scenario with Jesus, I feel myself exhaling. My chest relaxes and the furrow in my brow begins to melt away. I sense that I am likeable, maybe even enjoyable.
Which one of these portraits of Jesus hangs on the wall of your mind?
Who helped you hang it there?
Since I began to seek God for the help I needed (the peace I lacked) I have found Jesus to be more like the gentleman in the beach scenario. The Bible verses I have read portray Jesus as generous and kind. The verses I’ve found show me He wants to help me enjoy my life. With the passing of time, my study of God’s Word has shown me Jesus shepherding me to safety and serenity. I have discovered Him, His lifestyle, to be the way I most enjoy. I’ve been able to see that He gave up everything so that I would not be fooled into thinking His Father was out to get me.
He is the fountain of salvation. And He is kind enough to lead me to Himself, to help me see Him as the One, True Avenue to experiencing this supernatural life in a physical world. He is gracious. He is inviting. He is patient. He is interested. He is not repelled by my ignorance and wrong thinking.
May I continue to experience this love Jesus gives, and become His welcoming greeter on the beach. Let my interactions with others be filled with the kindness He gives me. May they see that my ability to like my life and myself comes from Him. May I be brave enough to tell them how I struggled until I discovered how much He liked me.
Use me Father, to bring them to Jesus where the water of salvation can lap at their feet.
Jennifer White is the author of the forthcoming book, Prayers for New Brides: Putting on the Armor after the Wedding Dress. In her late thirties, Jennifer began to discover that Jesus was not only her eternal Savior. He was the One to save her marriage. She blogs at Prayerfully Speaking offering hope from the truth in God’s Word. Download her free ebook today: Prayers Spoken, Lives Changed: God’s Extraordinary Love in 18 Ordinary People. #GodAnswers prayer!
Free ebook: jenniferowhite.com/prayersspoken