May 26, 2017
Memorial Day is what sparks not only memories of those who died in wars, but remembering special moments in life. A while back, my friend and I entered a hotel’s conference room, eager to receive nuggets of wisdom from each speaker. A loud buzz filled the room.
The special part for me was that Cecil Murphy was teaching the sessions—the illustrious author of over 100 books, including “Ninety Minutes in Heaven” which has been on the New York Times bestselling list for 130 weeks and has been translated into 37 languages.
I settled in my seat, anticipating the wisdom he’d pour out. And he did.
Once the first portion ended, I chatted with other writers, catching up. Suddenly, I heard a familiar voice to my left. “Excuse me,” he said. “I just want to say hi.”
He took me by the arm, and gave me a big hug.
My delight turned to awe. It was Cecil Murphy! His warm gesture left me touched and ever so grateful. Yes, THE Cecil Murphy, the famous author actually remembered me after we first met five years ago!
Why do we have that reaction when someone of a great stature extends kindness toward us? Could it be we feel we’re unworthy or undeserving?
Okay, time to admit it. I’ll be the first. We often have that same notion when it comes to a connection with Jesus. We fall into that false idea that Jesus, the Lord of our lives, the King of kings might not be interested in lil’ ol’ me down here.
And with sentiments of unworthiness, we rationalize: His divine and awe-inspiring presence couldn’t be real. At least not really enough for me to have personal contact with Him.
How wrong we can be. What He wants is to know Him enough to feel comfortable to call upon Him. He so longs for us to whisper any need, any doubt, any insecurity. He’s not way out there in the universe somewhere; He’s right by us, watching our tears, hearing our sobs, reading our longings, and so, so very aware of our pain.
Personalizing this verse just a bit: “You, Lord, hear the desire of the afflicted (like the person reading this right now); you encourage them, and you listen to their cry” (Psalm 10:17 [NIV]).
Father, help me to let go feelings of unworthiness, for you make me worthy—with your unending love, your constant nurturing, and your trustworthy reassurance. In Jesus’ name, amen.
How close do you feel to Jesus right now?
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