Romans 10:13-14 – Everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved. How, then, can they call on the one they have not believed in? And how can they believe in the one of whom they have not heard? And how can they hear without someone preaching to them? (NIV)
I very seldom watch a movie more than once. There is one film, however, that I watch several times each year. I never get tired of this story, and each time I see and hear it, I know and enjoy it just that much more. I also always spot something new: some little detail of scenery, a sentence, expression, or gesture which I hadn't noticed before.
As I sat viewing this old favourite yet again the other morning, I mused upon the fact that there is also another story which I never tire of: the story of Jesus and His love. Much like my movie, each time I read or hear it, I am touched anew by a deeper perception of just what it means to know and love and be loved by the Saviour. Because I am always touched afresh, my hearing of the story embeds the truth and details of Christ's love and life a little more solidly within my heart day by day. The better I know the story, the easier it is to pass it along to others — through word and deed. In fact, God has called each of His children to pass this precious story of truth along. As the apostle Paul has written, each of us is to be an ambassador for Christ.
2 Corinthians 5:17-20a – Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old has gone, the new has come! All this is from God, who reconciled us to himself through Christ and gave us the ministry of reconciliation: that God was reconciling the world to himself in Christ, not counting men's sins against them. And he has committed to us the message of reconciliation. We are therefore Christ's ambassadors, as though God were making his appeal through us. (NIV)
Sometimes, it's easy to feel that we have heard it all before. The sermons don't seem to hold too much of anything new. The Scriptures are hard to focus upon, as the words are so familiar. People's testimonies seem to run together.
Ecclesiastes 1:9 – What has been will be again, what has been done will be done again; there is nothing new under the sun. (NIV)
We can, therefore, if we are not careful, fall into boredom when it comes to the things of God, and, yes, even the old, old story of Jesus and His love — unless we remember and claim this fact:
Hebrews 4:12 – The word of God is living and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart. (NIV)
God's Word, the story of Christ and His love, is alive and able to be new within each of us every time we hear, read, or pass it along. New implications, truths, and nuances are there for the taking, if by faith and diligence we remember to ask God to open our hearts and minds afresh to the old, old story day by day.
Prayer: Father God, thank You for the old, old story of Jesus and His love. Enable each of us today to hear with a keen and appreciative heart and ear Your living Word, that we may go forth as ambassadors of reconciliation in a world at war with You and one another. In Christ's name, we ask. Amen.