Growing in our Relationship with Jesus

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She can read!

My eldest granddaughter is an emergent reader. Recently we were on vacation together, sitting in a tourist tram, and I asked her to read the words in the front of the tram. I waited, figuring I would have to help her with the more difficult words. Yet, slowly but surely, she read the entire sentence! “Come as guests, leave as friends.” I was surprised, yet excited for her.

It is a thrill to watch this 5 year old have a new world open up to her as she grows in her ability to read. New opportunities are now at her fingertips.

I realized the same is true of us in our relationship with Jesus. When our knowledge of God moves from head knowledge to heart knowledge, an entire new world opens up to us. When we realize that Jesus, God in the flesh, desires nothing less than a personal relationship with each of us, we begin to see and understand that new opportunities are available to us. Those opportunities were available all along, but now they can grow and be nurtured in new ways, because Jesus has just become real to us.

Just as my granddaughter is an emergent reader, so, too, many of us are emergent followers of Jesus. We are just discovering what lies ahead. She has to continue pressing on to read well, and we have to press on, in the words of Paul, to grow in our faith. This is a time to continue your discoveries. This is a time to seek out growth, seek out going deeper in this relationship with Creator, Redeemer, and Sustainer of Life. What are you doing today to help you grow in your relationship with Jesus?

And, if you are one who has not discovered this reality, that Jesus is real and wants a relationship with you, this can be a time to seek him out, to allow emergent discoveries to become a reality in your life.

Just as my granddaughter is discovering that reading is so exciting, you will be amazed at the exciting path that lies before you when you allow Jesus to be central in your life.

MUMC Youth Work Camp-Last Work Day

The following story is from Caleb G.

My resident is an older African-American woman from Georgia. Immediately upon our arrival she welcomed each member of our crew with big hugs. She kept saying, “Oh, I’m so happy y’all are here! I’m just so happy!” She always talks about how blessed she is. She continually offers us “pop”, that’s what New Yorkers call soda, chips, and Kool-Aid, which she puts way too much sugar in, but it’s good anyway. Unfortunately, she lost one of her sons to leukemia almost a year ago. Although she laments Howard, she recognizes that it all falls into God’s plan and knows that he is in a better place. Her continual enthusiasm and perseverance through even the toughest of times has been a inspiration to me and something I will strive to emulate in the future.