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IN TOUCH WITH GOD   by Edward Heppenstall

Found by God JANUARY 22


"What do you think? Suppose a man has a hundred sheep. If one of them strays, does he not leave the other ninety-nine on the hillside and go in search of the one that strayed?" Matt. 18:12, N.E.B.

The story of God in the Bible is the greatest love story ever written. Almost all of God's acts reveal His endeavor to find men, to win men, to reconcile men to Himself, and to give men eternal life. God is always trying to hand us His calling card in one way or another. What a marvelous approach God makes to us in sending His own Son in search of us!

At the same time the Bible is an account of man's flight from God. When men sin they try to hide from God. Adam started it. In the Garden of Eden God came looking for Adam. God offers men the bread of life, and they stay hungry. He offers them the Light of the world, and they prefer to remain in the shadows. They don't want the exposure that the Light might bring. Men sin. God comes offering forgiveness and acceptance, but all too often men despair of themselves. God offers to carry their burden of sin, but they refuse to give it up.

" O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, thou that killest the prophets, and stonest them which are sent unto thee, how often would I have gathered thy children together, even as a hen gathereth her chickens under her wings, and ye would not" (Matt. 23:37). Why does man take flight from God? For two reasons: his fear and his pride.

Satan persuades men that God is a hard taskmaster. Christ asks men to take up the cross and follow Him, and men are persuaded to believe God will strip them of all they have. None of us like deals unless they are to our advantage. We do not want to lose. Often we are afraid that we will lose, especially in light of all the claims Christ makes upon us-the surrender of self, and death to the world. Following Christ means sacrifice. Many people do not like that.

Sometimes it appears that God has a disconcerting way of keeping out of sight. But the fault is ours. He continues to wait and to knock, still caring. At the end of the road He is our heavenly Father who has wanted us all along. Why not let ourselves be found?

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