The following is from Pearls of Great Price. Copyright © 2006 by Joni Eareckson Tada.
Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength. —Deuteronomy 6:5-6
When Tim, an elder at our church, moved into his home in the Santa Monica Mountains five years ago, he was awestruck by an enormous rock formation that was set back from the main highway. The rock citadel towered majestically over the waters of a sparkling lake. “That first year I nearly ran myself off the road and into that lake half a dozen times, rubbernecking to get every view possible of its grandeur, at every time of day, in every different kind of light,” Tim said, “the sun illuminated its dramatic cracks and crevices in so many diverse and magnificent ways. If that rock were in the middle of Kansas, it would draw a million visitors every year!” A few months ago he was driving a visitor from the airport to his home. They came around a corner and his guest exclaimed, “Look at that Rock!” to which Tim replied “What rock? Oh, that rock!”
The next week in church, Tim blushed as he told us about the incident. “It reminded me of the ‘sin of familiarity’ – a sin which only those who have seen and loved the grandeur of our Rock of our Salvation, Jesus Christ, can commit.”
My elder-friend went on to say that familiarity with Christ keeps us from enjoying true intimacy with the Lord. We listen to Christian talk radio, thinking it suffices for our daily devotions. Or we reach for an article on the latest theological controversy, and fail to reach for the Word of God itself. Ask the Lord to give you a new sense of his presence and a fresh touch of his Spirit. Renew your commitment to love him with your whole heart, soul and strength.
Lord Jesus, you are my Rock and Fortress. You tower over every thing in my life. Forgive me when I take for granted your grace and strength in my life, and may I never, ever allow your death and resurrection to become ‘familiar.’
Thank you, Joni, for your wonderful words of wisdom!