"For I know the plans I have for you," declares the LORD, "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. Then you will call on me and come and pray to me, and I will listen to you. You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart." Jeremiah 29:11-13 (NIV)
After months of planning and preparation, the first leg of our journey has begun. Soon we will be feeling the warm sea-breeze on our faces, enjoying the warmth of the sun and scanning the horizon for the next landmark. This journey, while intended to be an enjoyable method to reach our destination of Sacramento California, has but one purpose – to share with our daughter and son-in-law the miracle of birth.
Every journey has a beginning; every journey has a destination; and, every journey has a purpose.
Let’s consider our personal journey with Christ. Whether you are well along the way or just getting started, it is more than likely that you can remember the beginning – the time you responded to the knocking and opened the door to your heart to let Jesus come in and dine with you. That was the beginning.
While we believe we know the purpose of our journey in Christ – we are called to a holy life (2 Timothy 9) – pinpointing our destination is a mystery. This is where faith comes in. I suspect many are familiar with the words of Hebrews 11: 1, “Now faith is confidence in what we hope for and assurance about what we do not see.” How often do we read the rest of the chapter? If we read down to verse 8, we see that God has called Abraham to go on a journey (the beginning) to where he was to receive his inheritance (the purpose). He obeyed and went, even though he did not know where he was going (the destination?).
Abraham, Enoch, Noah and Abel all acted in faith following the call of God and in doing so caused great things to happen. Even Sarah, who was well past child-bearing age, bore a child – Isaac – because she had faith in the one who had given his promise. The birth of Isaac was the fulfillment of God’s promise to Abraham and Sarah; it was also the beginning of a long journey to fulfil God’s promise to the world he so loved. Few were aware that this was to be the inheritance God had promised Abraham.
Many centuries later, Isaiah would be made aware of this inheritance and would write these words, "For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given: and the government shall be upon his shoulder: and his name shall be called Wonderful, Counsellor, The mighty God, The everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace." Isaiah 9: 6 (NIV) After another time of waiting and watching, Jesus came and another journey began – a journey that would lead to the cross and the opportunity for reconciliation with the God who loves us so much.
It is with great excitement and thankfulness to God that we can announce the safe arrival of Matthew Ian Bisho, son of Heather and Brian Bisho and a brother of James Bisho. Oh and a grandson for Teresa and me. Another journey begins.
One of the wonderful things about our journey in Christ is that the trip is already planned. The journey has begun, our purpose is clear and the destination is in God’s hands. We simply have to accept Jesus as our guide and trust in him alone. Trust and obey there is no other way.