Most of you won’t relate to what I am about to write. But you probably know someone who could. I don’t know about you, but I have resigned myself to the fact that not all people will make their way to faith in Christ, including people I care for very much. Scripture speaks of one impediment to faith in 2 Cor. 4:4 saying “The god of this age (Satan) has blinded the minds of unbelievers, so that they cannot see the light of the gospel that displays the glory of Christ.” While I don’t question that, I believe there’s more to it.
Despite the persistent work of the Holy Spirit wooing and attempting to draw people to God, there is sometimes stubbornness and outright defiance to God’s efforts, almost as if shaking a bony fist at God and challenging Him to try to make spiritual headway into one’s life. Like daring God to catch you and bring your heart under submission. Our coming to faith is not doing our holy and merciful God a favor. He doesn’t need us, but He loves us and wants relationship with us. Granted, God wants us to be saved, but there is a very real responsibility for us to pursue Him. “Draw near to God and he will draw near to you.” (James 4:8) Note the action required of us.
My personal coming to faith journey was not so much a matter of rebellion or resistance as it was pure ignorance. I didn’t know squat about the Christian faith and didn’t have Christians within my circle of relationships. (At least any who weren’t undercover) But we all know people who have had an introduction to faith and to God through family, friends or the church but they still find reason to dig in their heels. For adults I generally find it a bit shallow to hide behind the excuse that something or someone from the “church” offended or hurt them. These hurts occur throughout all venues of life. The “hypocrite excuse” has lost its potency too, since to a degree in life’s sectors we are all hypocrites at times. Encountering hypocrisy doesn’t normally cause us to quit our jobs or abandon our friends and families.
Hebrews 11:6 says God “rewards those who earnestly seek him,” again illustrating our need to take action and participate with God. God is really good! He is even better than the representation of the good father in the parable told in Luke 15 that we call the “prodigal son” story. It grieves me that some people can hold on to their resistance to God considering what truly hangs in the balance. “If you seek Him, He will be found by you – but if you forsake Him, He will forsake you.” (2 Chron. 15:2) This is no small matter. Proverbs 2 promises if we take certain steps we will discover a true knowledge of God and Matthew 6:33 implores us to seek God before all other things as a means to provision and blessing by God.
Apart from prayer, I don’t have an answer or easy fix to unearth those who have dug their heels in and appear to wait for God to move them forward in faith. Though God is merciful and full of grace, He is still God. He is the King. We enter His court. We are to humble ourselves before Him. Jesus went as far as God possibly could by humbling Himself to be hung on a cross. While I realize this article is pretty much “preaching to the choir,” perhaps someone will recognize that knowing God is not something a teacher or Pastor or parent or spouse can do for them. We must move towards God to meet Him and know Him . . . and these steps are well worth the effort! Think About It.