Every year on Christmas Day TBS shows the classic “A Christmas Story” where Ralphie, of course, is waiting for that perfect gift: The Red Rider BB Gun. Just mention the words Red Rider and the first thing that comes to mind is, “You’ll shoot your eye out kid!” The truth is we have seen the movie a thousand times thanks to TBS taking a break from their regular programming to give us those memorable scenes. There is the “triple dog dare you”, the granddaddy of them all. Also, “the bunny suit”, getting his mouth washed out with soap, and the major award that could be seen from Cleveland Street. If you have never seen this movie, then you must have your TV off on Christmas day. There is one scene where Ralphie is so excited after receiving his Little Orphan Annie secret decoder. To his surprise he would now be able to decode the secret message. The anticipation was lifted when he received the final word, “Be sure to drink your Ovaltine”. Let’s just say old Ralphie was not impressed.
Sometimes I think we approach God’s word as if there is this great mystery, or that we need some sort of decoder to understand the message. I don’t believe God’s word was ever meant to be a mystery. There are things about God that we certainly do not understand; things that we must take in faith. However, I feel that He has given His word so that we can begin to understand who He is, and what He desires for us to have.
Luke 8:10 Jesus said, “To you it has been granted to know the mysteries of the kingdom of God, but to the rest it is in parables, so that SEEING THEY MAY NOT SEE, AND HEARING THEY MAY NOT UNDERSTAND”. This was of course after the Parable of the Sower and He goes on to say the seed is the word of God. He explained how each different person had placed themselves in a situation that did not allow the word to take root. When I read this, I don’t see barriers that God has placed in our life. I see barriers that we allow. God’s desire is for all to be with Him in heaven. His desire was so strong that He would send his Son to be with us. So if I were to unlock a mystery, what would I do? Let’s start with four areas.
- Be Present. How many times do we see God call someone in the Bible and the words that come out of their mouth are “Here I am Lord?” I do not believe it is by accident that these words occur in scripture. I believe God is saying if you want to find me, you need a willing heart first. “You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart” Jeremiah 29:13.
- Be Proactive. Is there something in your life that gets in the way of seeking Him? Is there a distraction or sin that you need to take care of?
- Be Purposeful. Jesus taught us the greatest commandment, “‘You must love the Lord your God with all your heart, all your soul, and all your mind.’ This is the first and greatest commandment. A second is equally important: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ The entire law and all the demands of the prophets are based on these two commandments.” Our purpose is found in loving God and loving others.
- Be Persistent. James 1:5 says if you need wisdom ask our generous God and He will give it to you. He will not rebuke you for asking. That doesn’t sound like a God who is throwing up roadblocks or mystery to block the way. He calls us to be persistent and not give up. When we are persistent we will receive the crown of life. NEVER STOP SEEKING!