As the pastor of the church I have a ring of keys to open all the doors to get into the building. There were times, however, that I would arrive at church and realize that I forgot my keys and there was no way to get in. Now I keep one door key with my car keys so that if I forget the rest I can at least get inside.
It is nice to have options for entering the church. I can enter through just about any door depending on which keys I have with me. But our relationship with Jesus doesn’t give us as many choices.
As Jesus was talking to his disciples and preparing them for what he was about to do he explained the importance of a relationship with him. What did he say about it? How do we get to God, the Father?
The statement leaves very little wiggle room or options in our faith. There are still many people who feel certain that they will go to heaven and enjoy the blessings of eternal life because – in their mind – they have never done anything wrong. They haven’t stolen anything. They haven’t told any harmful lies. They even try to be nice to other people.
But Jesus makes it plain. Jesus is the way. He is the person with whom we must have a relationship in order to more fully understand who God is.
Good deeds are never enough. Kind words are never enough. Sympathy, caring, giving are never enough; and certainly good intentions don’t do it.
To be a real Christian we must have a deep and genuine relationship with Jesus. He is the way to be holy and to know God. Learning from him and trying to show love the way he did is the way to be a righteous person. We must accept that Jesus is our Savior and we must acknowledge that he is the Son of God.
In our Lenten journey we are to examine our faith life and honestly determine what our relationship with Jesus really is. If we only think of him as a wise teacher and compassionate counselor then we are falling short in our faith. To achieve that fulfilling and successful life of faith and love we must see that Jesus is our Lord, and we must value what all of that means to us.
DAILY CHALLENGE: Have you affirmed that Jesus is the son of God? Have you accepted him as your Savior? Will you do it now?