By Rev. Michael Eleveld
I remember a conversation I had with a fellow student at a Christian college in the Midwest. My buddy and I had returned to school from a Wednesday night prayer meeting at a local church. It had been a blessed night of Bible study and heart-stirring testimonies and we were spiritually on fire! She came over to hang out and we told her about the exciting events of the evening. She didn’t say anything as she looked at us with a stunned expression. Finally, she said, “You guys are really excited aren’t you?” Yes, we were! Then she said, “Listen guys, when you have been a Christian as long as I have been, you will learn there is nothing to get excited about.”
She was dead serious, I emphasize the word dead.
Many Christians are glad that their destinies have changed addresses from hell to heaven, but their walk with Christ has failed to stir them beyond the moment of their salvation. They have grown spiritually stagnant; God no longer thrills them. God and church are now boring. It’s hard to imagine that could ever be true, but it is almost an epidemic among God’s people. Today our hearts’ desire has moved from heavenly things to the plain stuff of this Earth.
And, it is especially true among Christian addicts and alcoholics who have surrendered to their default setting of living life five minutes at a time and obeying the demands of their flesh.
That is exactly the condition the Jewish people were in during the days of Malachi. They had been living in Jerusalem for about 100 years after their return from Babylon, and a spiritual lethargy had settled in.
Malachi called them out of it, and he is still calling us out of it today. The overriding thrust of his argument, by inspiration of God’s spirit, was to get their minds and hearts refocused on God’s immense and magnificent love! Malachi speaks the word of God and God says, “I have loved you.” Despite what they had done wrong, Malachi still starts his prophecy with, “I have loved you!”
We reach out to addicts and alcoholics each day with this same message. God Loves You! You can’t continue in your lifestyle, but by diving into the ocean of God’s love, you can let that love transform your life.
How to become Spiritually Awake
This week, start each day with a simple prayer. Tell God that you are intentionally opening your eyes, your heart, and your mind, to see His love. And, ask God to show you the many ways He loves you TODAY. It might be a blessed moment in your devotional time, or the kindness of a fellow Christian at an opportune moment, or a special answer to a prayer, but I believe God will delight to show you His love is constant and ever-present in your life. Then let His love transform your life. You will no longer be spiritually ho hum, but spiritually thrilled to be among the elect of God, His child.