Tuesday, January 8, 2019
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Mackinaw Island in Michigan is one of the special places in America. It's a romantic island. It's surrounded by three of the Great Lakes. There are no cars, just bikes, horses and carriages. For my wife and me, it's a very special place. It's where we honeymooned many years ago, and again on a special anniversary when our kids gave it to us as a gift. They gave us some nights on our honeymoon island to celebrate that milestone anniversary. When we were newlyweds, we couldn't afford to stay in a hotel on the island. We could barely afford a cheap motel on the mainland. This time we actually stayed on Mackinaw Island, and we had a great time. Being there actually took us back to the very beginnings of our life together, when there were no children, no grandchildren, and a lot less responsibility. It was good to get back to where it started – one man and one woman in love.
I'm Ron Hutchcraft and I want to have A Word With You today about "Going Back to Where You Started."
It's a good thing to stop the world for a little while and go back to where it all began. For couples, yeah, but even more for those of us who belong to Jesus Christ. In fact, maybe Jesus is inviting you even now to go back with Him to where it all began.
In Matthew 28:10, our word for today from the Word of God, Jesus has just blasted out of His grave on Easter morning, and He has a message for His disciples: "Go and tell my brothers to go to Galilee; there they will see Me." And they did. It was there that Jesus said to them, "All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to Me. Therefore, go and make disciples of all nations..." (Matthew 28:18-19).
Why this trip back to Galilee to be with Jesus? They were in Jerusalem. That's like a long 90-mile walk from Galilee. And Jesus would send them back to Jerusalem to start their mission. So why are we going back to Galilee? Well, I believe it was because that's where it all began. That's where they met Christ. That's where they abandoned everything to follow Christ. And that's where they needed to go after all the battles, the failures, the mountains, and the valleys that they had experienced since they met Jesus and before He launched them on a mission beyond belief.
I think Jesus may be asking you to go back to your Galilee, to remember the wonder of what He did to rescue you, the things about Him that captured your heart then; the time you surrendered fully to His purposes for your life. All of that tends to get obscured by all the knowledge you've acquired, all the responsibilities you've taken on, all the disappointments and disillusionment, all the complexities of your life. Jesus is saying, "Come back with Me to where we started, so you can remember again just who I am, who you are, and just what I've created you to do."
When you started, it was pretty simple: one man or one woman following one Savior wherever He was going. Now with all the other voices in your life, it must still be that one man or woman following that one Savior. He wants to go back to that point where you sensed things that He was calling you to do. It's still His calling on your life, no matter what's happened to you since then.
And there was probably a time and a place where you totally surrendered to Him – no strings attached – maybe at a camp, a conference, in church,or just alone in your room. You didn't care where that commitment took you did you, how much money you had, what sacrifices would be required? You were all His for whatever He wanted you to be and whatever He wanted you to do. Maybe that unconditional surrender has become a conditional surrender, encumbered by your position, your possessions, your convenience, your comfort, a lot of stuff. And Jesus is calling you back to that original surrender where it all began.
It's time to go back to your Galilee – to rekindle your first love and remember that it's still all about Jesus. Jesus wants to bring you back to where it all started so He can take your life where it's never gone before!