By Elizabeth Prata
When I was growing up our family belonged to a country club. It had nice grounds, ice cream and Popsicles in the clubhouse, yum, and two huge pools. One was a kiddie splash pool. The other was an olympic sized pool with a shallow end, a deep end, and a jut-out where there were two diving boards. One was short and the other seemed as high as a skyscraper.
Of course when you’re a kid, your parents put you in the kiddie pool first.
Then when you grow a bit and become a more confident swimmer, you can go in the big pool. You splash around and play and have fun in the shallow end. After a while when you’re ready, you venture into the deeper water.
The biggest goal is to pluck up the courage to climb all those steps on the high diving board and jump off.
Our growth in sanctification is like that. At first we’re on milk, not meat, though meat is the goal. As time passes in our studies, we begin to understand the plain meanings of short verses, then grow in understanding and have insight into the deeper meanings. We learn nuances of words, historical contexts, the culture of the time, and theological constructs. Soon we feel confident enough to debate and get involved in hair-splitting controversies, defending and exhorting the faith.
It’s good to get back into the kiddie pool for a while. It’s wise to remember the plain things. Exult in the commonplace verses. You never, ever ‘grow out of’ those, you know. It’s good to just get back to the beginning and bask in that initial feeling of joy you had when you were first saved.
Contemplate your salvation.
Our church had its annual retreat this weekend. about 70 of us from all ages piled into a mountain resort for three sessions of learning “Ordinary Faithfulness.” In between sessions we either spent time in solitary study and contemplation in the different corners of the property, or fellowshipping together in a hike along the waterfall, or visiting the nearby town.
The lessons we were taught during the retreat were fantastic, and I enjoyed them. They were edifying. As I spent time in solitary thought back at the retreat center in between sessions, my mind and heart locked on to the ‘basic’ truth.
I would not be here if not for Jesus. None of us would be at this mountain today if not for Jesus. I owe SO MUCH to His decision (not mine) to yank me out of sin and into His throne room. I owe Him all for giving me the spirit of Repentance, and lifting the scales that had been firmly glued to my eyes for 4 decades. The thrill of salvation itself and all its mystery, wonder, and glory never fades.
Do you savor your salvation? Actively thank Jesus for it? Remember the ‘simple things.’ Salvation is grace itself.
There would be no manifestation of God’s grace or true goodness, if there was no sin to be pardoned, no misery to be saved from. ~Jonathan Edwards
For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish, but have eternal life. (John 3:16)