Listen to this devotional:
Listen while you read: "How Firm A Foundation"1 (Lyrics)
Jeremiah 29:13 – If you look for me wholeheartedly, you will find me. (NLT)
If I didn't pay, I couldn't talk.
As my wife and I sat on the front porch of the hundred-year-old home that we rented, we often heard it ring — a pay phone situated next to an old country store across the road. Each night around the same time, the ringing began.
Listening to the phone ring took us back to a time when pay phones were everywhere. When I was away from home and needed to make a call, I either stopped by someone's house or a business — or found a pay phone. But pay phones needed … pay — not only to start the conversation but also to continue it. Operators interrupted conversations with, "Please deposit __ cents if you wish to continue your call." If I didn't, she ended the conversation. Money restricted use, unless I made a collect call and the person on the other end agreed to pay the charges.
God once restricted access to Himself as well. He appointed priests to intercede for the people. They made the sacrifices, approached God's throne, and heard the confessions. Only the high priest could enter the Most Holy Place once a year — where he made a sacrifice for himself and then for the people, before confessing a year's worth of sins.
When Jesus died on the cross, things changed. The curtain keeping people out of the Holy of Holies was torn in two, symbolizing unrestricted access to God for all who choose to approach Him through Jesus by confession and repentance of their sins.
I'm glad that the old ways of doing things are gone — both of making calls and of approaching God. A few hours without my smartphone and I experience nomophobia. I should feel the same about interaction with God. He is continually with me, by the presence of His Spirit. I need recurrent communion with Him — and I can have it. Talking with Him doesn't cost a dime, nor does He establish a time limit. I can come as often as I want and with as much stuff as I need to unload.
What's more, God wants me to come. After all, He's the One who cleared up the restricted use policy of old. He wants us to share the details of our life and ask for His guidance. He wants to share in our joys and our sorrows.
Don't let anything keep you from enjoying your unrestricted access to God.
Prayer: Father, our praises rise to You for opening the way for us to come to You. Amen.