After God’s Heart

Thoughts on living as a man after God's heart in every aspect of life: as a husband, a father, and in my work as a Bible Software developer.

Wednesday, August 09, 2006

To Whom Shall I Go?

Twenty-two years ago tonight, I came to know Jesus Christ as my Lord and Savior. An angry young man of fifteen, I sat at the end of a dock and began pouring my heart out to God, confessing my sin, my weakness, my utter inability to live without Him. I remember looking up at the night sky and sensing God's presence all around me, filling up every expanse except for the pitiful little void inside me. How sweet was the realization that in His greed, He wished to fill that space too!

I didn't know how to pray any formulaic sinner's prayer, and I don't remember much of what I said that night. But I do remember the promise I made: "God, I don't know what kind of servant I'm going to be for you, but I want to be the best I can be."

I can't tell you how many times I've broken that promise, but I'm quite sure I've broken it every single day of the past twenty-two years. My faith is so weak, my righteousness is as filthy rags, and I am sometimes fraught with the most scandalous doubts. Yet when I went for a walk tonight and looked up at the night sky, I did not sense that God was present everywhere except inside me. On the contrary, as perceptible as He seemed within the expanse of the night sky, I felt His presence much more deeply within the meager confines of my own heart and soul. Asking Jesus into one's heart may not be Biblical language, and it may be a trite way to describe the miracle of regeneration in Christ, but it does express one aspect of what I have experienced in my own conversion. Christ is in my heart, and has been for the past twenty-two years.

It is that simple realization which bolsters my faith, dispels all my doubts, and gives me a renewed desire to keep that oft-broken promise. I am not alone. Since that night there has never been a time when I truly felt alone. There have been times when God seemed distant, but there's never been a time when I truly believed Him to be absent. I have broken the promise I made that night countless times, but whenever I sense Him asking me "Are you also going to go?" my answer is always the same: "Lord, to whom shall I go? You have the words of eternal life" (John 6:67-68).

After twenty-two years, I am still His. No matter how "prone to wander" I know myself to be, I belong to Him. A worthless servant I may be, but by His grace I am His servant. Words cannot express how thankful I am to have nowhere else to go.