Return to Me...
Oh, how I love that movie.
Have you seen it?
The plot of the movie is about this man, Bob, whose wife suddenly dies, while the other main character, Grace, was waiting for a heart transplant. Because of the death of his wife, Grace receives her heart. Later on, Bob and Grace happen to meet (of course) and they end up falling in love (duh!), but Bob doesn't find out till later that Grace has his wife's heart. The news of the transplant comes as a shock at first, but later its becomes a neat connection between them. In a sense, his deceased wife returned to him through Grace.
What a unique story line, huh?!
This past week we finished reading the whole Bible in a little over a year. We ended in the book of Malachi, in which one repeated phrase stood out to me. Maybe it stood out to you, too.
"Return to me." Not only did this phrase appear in this one book, but also in Joel, Zechariah, Nehemiah, Isaiah, and Jeremiah. Clearly, this has something to say about our God.
1) He is not forceful, because if He were, we would never stray in the first place.
2) He longs to be in relationship with us.
3) He is consistent and doesn't give up on us.
Going back to #1. God is love and with love comes freedom. He allows us to make our own decisions in hopes that we will follow Him. Love is not forceful.
Since He made us in His image, with the intention to be in relationship, of course, He desires that we would want to be in relationship with Him.
Because He is faithful and loving, He doesn't stop pursuing us and the potential relationship we could have, but never forcing us.
The Israelites had an issue with staying in relationship with God. They had a tendency to ignore and stray away from Him. We see throughout the Old Testament how badly that broke His heart. He wanted so badly to be in relationship with Him, but it was like a one-way relationship. You know the friendships that seem to be one-way and not two-way. You may feel like you are doing all the work, but the other person isn't doing anything. It doesn't feel good, huh?
God felt that way. He wanted it to be a two-way relationship and He stills wants that for us today.
Maybe in the past, You felt real close to God. You were reading your Bible everyday. Your prayer life was at an all time high and your heart revolved around His heart, but some where along the way, something changed. Maybe not intentionally, but maybe for one reason or another, you fell out of your groove.
God says to you and me, "return to Me."
"I have always been here for you and I will never leave you, but please return to Me."
Just like the heart of Bob's wife returned to him through Grace, it's never to late for us to return to God. He made us in His image, to be in relationship together. He wants so badly to be in a two-way relationship instead of a one-way.