Some of us would like to get lost in a crowd, and others of us are afraid of being lost in a crowd. In the presence of Almighty God, whatever your desire, please be assured that with God, none of us are ever lost in a crowd.
Arctic sea birds called guillemots live on rocky coastal cliffs where thousands of them come together in small areas. Because of the crowded conditions, the females lay their eggs side by side in a long row. What’s incredible about these birds God created is that the mother bird can identify the eggs that belong to her. Studies show that even when one of a mother bird’s eggs is moved some distance away, she finds it and carries her egg back to its original location.
God, our heavenly Father becomes our Father when we repent, believe and receive Jesus into our lives. At the born-again moment of conversion, not by our abundant good works, not by our baptism, and not by our heritage or the church we are affiliated with, but at our new birth of receiving Jesus, we are adopted into the family of God. Our righteous Judge who saves us, then officially adopts us and writes our official name on our birth certificate in His Lamb’s Book of Life.
The Psalmist in Psalm 139 tells us that God is far more intimately acquainted with us than we can fathom. He knows our every thought, our every varying emotion, and our every decision before we make it. He has personal oversight of all our daily affairs. Every hair of our heads are numbered. The psalmist exclaimed as we all ought to, “Such knowledge is too wonderful for me; it is high, I cannot attain it.” Yet in our ever-increasing busyness and our crowded schedules, we live with disappointments and find it hard to believe that we are so well-loved and well-known by God. Though Jesus knows everything, we do not.
A man in the suburb of his city ran into the suburban railroad station one morning, and breathlessly asked the station agent, “When does the 8:01 train leave?” “At 8:01 sir!” “Well, the man replied, “It’s 7:59 by my watch, 7:57 by the town clock, and 8:04 by your station clock. Which am I to go by?” The agent replied, “You can go by any clock you wish, but you can’t go by the 8:01 train, for it has already left.”
Part of God’s knowledge rises high above our foolish thoughts that things just happen when they happen, without any rhyme or reason. God does have a plan, and those who put off receiving Jesus into their lives may wake up and find they have failed to receive the greatest gift of grace in all eternity — to know the Lord as their personal Savior. We may have thought being a faithful member of our church was adequate. It is as inadequate as thinking the town clock prohibits the 8:01 train from leaving at 8:01 because that town clock reads 7:57.
Others of us suppose we can schedule, manage, and control our lives down to the last detail, and we perhaps are planning to receive the Lord when we get old and close to death. Benjamin Franklin once said a very profound statement when he urged, “Work as if you were to live a hundred years; pray as if you were to die tomorrow.” When we come to know Jesus, we can turn on a Christian radio station and hear a song of God’s love for us, and well up with tears of joy. Try listening to the beautiful song, “I Could Sing Of Your Love Forever” with dry eyes. It’s almost impossible if you really know the Lord; if you are born again. But if you are begging God for a little extra time to decide, you may be banking on a late train leaving that had already left.
Dr. J. Wilbur Chapman once spoke of a man on the street, a tramp begging for a dime, back when a dime was worth a dime. As he stood on the street corner, this young man who had aged by his sinful choices, tapped a man on the shoulder and said, “Mister, could you please give me a dime?” As soon as the tramp saw the man’s face, he knew it was the man he had left when he ran away from home years before. He knew it was his father. The man threw his arms around the tramp and said, “Finally, I have found you. All I have is yours!” That beggar was begging for 10 cents, while his father for years had been looking for him to give him all he had.
Isn’t it time you quit begging for pennies, dimes, and nickels, living out your own agenda, to receive Jesus’ open arms? He has been calling for you a long time. Surrender today.
Richard Carlson is the pastor of the Rock Springs Evangelical Free Church. Of his 51 plus years in ministry, he has pastored locally for the last 42 years.