These were the words I found coming out of my mouth during a marathon four hour coffee catch up the other week (that didn't feel anywhere near that long!).
The discussion was about aspects of both our lives, and also encompassed someone passing who was encouraged by the snippets she heard of our conversation. As she shared the way God had broken into her life, had pursued her, I was encouraged with the affirmation that what He did for her, what He has done for me, what He has done for my friend, He can and will do for our loved ones and others, whether they seek Him or not.
The theme of Father God's pursuit of us has been recurring for me more recently and it continues to cry out for further reflection. It has been presented to me in song, in sermon and in what I have been reading on a number of fronts.
However,it can be so easy for us to think our relationship with God is all about us, about our efforts. WE must spend more time praying, more time worshipping, more time reading the Word. WE must pursue God. And despite best efforts and beliefs otherwise, so many messages we hear from pulpits and every other media can reinforce this: If you want to be closer to God, then you need to do this; you should do that; you must do the other. And it's exhausting!
How much more restful would it be if we realised that so many of our problems in our relationship with God are not about what we should do more of, but what we should stop doing?
If we stopped believing that we are unacceptable to God, or unworthy of His love, how would that look?
If we stopped believing that we are responsible for making ourselves more Christlike to be acceptable to God, and recognised that Jesus has come to dwell in us through His Spirit, that His indwelling is the only mark of acceptability we need, what would be different in us?
If we stopped holding onto all the "Christian sanctioned" false humilities of thinking less of ourselves and minimalising our importance, gifts and dreams, where could we go?
If we stopped trying to hide all our imperfections, sin and brokenness from God, and faced Him with them, what new freedoms would we find?
I am so painfully aware of my own tendency to fall back into that pattern of thinking that I must be the relentless one, that I must chase God with all my being to not miss out, to catch up to where He is at, to where I "should" be. Instead, it is time to stop; time to rest; and time to remember that it is He who pursued me from the start and that it is He who continues to pursue me today.