“Let ask you to take a little test with me right now.
Suppose that rear door opens and Jesus Christ, the crucified, risen, Lord, walks down this aisle, comes up to the podium and looks around for YOU. He spots you, walks directly to your seat, looks you straight in the eye.
What is Jesus’ face saying to you this moment?
Is his face saying, “I am so sick and tired of you, of your broken promises, your unkept resolutions, all your false starts, your hypocrisy. I’ve got my briefcase right here. We’re going to look at your resume and you are in deep caca.”
If Jesus’ face could say only one word to you right now, would the word be “REPENT!”
Would his face say “Thank you. Do you know what a joy it is to live in your heart? Do you know how proud I am of you, that after I chose you, you freely chose me for your Lord and Savior? Do you know how proud I am of you that you accepted the gift of faith that I offered to you? Do you have any idea of how grateful I am to you that last Tuesday when you were so uptight and strung out yourself, you still paused and took the time to smile at one of my little children who was so lonely and frightened, in need of a smile? You know the only time you break my heart is when you refuse to accept that every repented sin of your past life is not only forgiven but so entirely forgotten that I cannot remember what it was? Do you know that I’ve loved you from all eternity and no matter what goes down I can’t stop loving you?”
What is Jesus’ face saying? What kind of feedback are you getting right now from the risen Christ?
If it’s negative, non-affirming, feedback then quite understandably you’ll find very little joy in any act of religion or worship. If this God who supposedly sees right through you is always reminding you of your sins, faults, hangups, and character defects, then you’re probably sneaking a peek at your watch right now….
Even if you never committed another sin, went to church every Sunday, and read the Bible every day, when they bury you, you will look like a shriveled old fig.
Because for you Christianity was for you a moral code or an ethic but it was never a love affair!
A love affair!”
-Brennan Manning, God Loves You As You Are, Not As You Should Be