Yesterday I ventured out into the snow because I have been feeling this pressing urge over the last few weeks to find a church. So I faced my fear of driving on ice and managed to make it the mile or so to Chillicothe Bible Church.
I wasn’t sure what to expect. I was nervous going by myself and with my past experiences with churches being so bad I wasn’t sure if I was going to be able to approach this with an open mind. But I knew I needed to do this.
The church is currently without a pastor at the moment, and they had a guest, Paster Swartzentraub. He was charismatic, fascinating and kept my attention riveted for the 40 minutes or so that he spoke. With it being the Christmas season his message was focused on Christ and the message of salvation. But he posed a few questions that had me really thinking on the familiar message.
He spoke of viewing Jesus Christ as both a divine being and as a human being. My whole life this has been something I’ve believed despite my waywardness in living a “christian” life. But this time it struck home exactly what he was talking about.
He compared Christ taking on a human form to a lesser idea of one of us walking into a zoo and feeling such an incredible love for baboons that, if we were able, to be born of a baboon, be raised and nurtured by a baboon, be mocked and inflicted pain upon by the baboons and finally be killed by the baboons.. and then choose to come back from the dead and still love the baboons completely – so completely that we willingly continue to keep the form of the baboon for eternity.
And that would be not even be lightyears to how it is with Christ’s love for mankind.
See, I was raised being taught that Christ died on the cross for me so that, should I choose to accept him, I would have eternal salvation. But it never fully hit me until yesterday the sacrifice he made and continues to make to allow that to be possible. I cannot even imagine consciously allowing myself to become a baboon and live as that animals culture would dictate – yet God allowed himself to become a man and to provide us with a mediator (John 14:6 – “I am the Way, the Truth and the Life. No one comes to the Father except through me” NIV) that we could understand, that our finite minds could grasp the concept of.
So yesterday I found what my heart has been needing. A confirmation of love, no matter what I’ve done or how I’ve lived over the last several years and an opportunity to learn more and grow closer to Him. And the fellowship, Chris, was nice. =)