"The water that I shall give him...shall be in him a well of water springing up into everlasting life." -John 4:14
The gift of eternal life. Of all the gifts that our Heavenly Father extends to us, that is the richest of all. How sad that so many turn away from it. I picture God extending His hand to a man and in His hand is the most beautifully wrapped gift anyone has ever seen. I see that man looking at the gift as if there were something horrible inside it, and he turns and walks away. I see God's heart breaking.
I believe the man simply didn't understand. His blinded, distrusting eyes didn't see a beautiful gift. They saw bondage. Man often mistakes worldliness as freedom and God's gift of salvation as imprisonment. He sees life with God as a set of rules to adhere to; solemn and devoid of fun. The truth is exactly the opposite of that.
The things of this world; money, prestige, physical lusts, those are the things that enslave us. They bind us in chains of addiction, fear, doubt, distrust - sin. They blind us to the truth of God's gift. They may feel good in the short-term, but leave us empty in the long run. True freedom comes with peace, strength, love, and a sound mind - the wrapping that God's gift comes in. Life with God is THE adventure, and until you know God's brand of fun, you haven't known fun. He has a sense of humor and He is the most creative of all beings. God possesses a depth of kindness, grace, and love like nothing we've ever experienced. A "set of rules" is religion. God is about relationship, NOT religion.
Eternal life is what God is offering. In return He asks for a relationship with us. With each one of us individually. A personal, eternal life-long friendship. Who wouldn't want to be friends with the most powerful person in the universe who loves them unconditionally and wants only the best for them?
I want to run after the man and make him see that the gift he turned away from is truly the most beautiful gift he would ever receive. The trick to that is that the man has free will. God will not force anyone to accept His gift. The man gets to choose for himself. I can only pray that he changes his mind and comes back for the gift. You see, as long as that man lives there is no expiration date.
Are you one who walked away from God's richest gift? There's still time to change your mind.