A few nights before we left on our cruise my children, my grandmother, and I took a trip down memory lane. We were remembering when my kids were babies—the cute things they did and fun things they said. We also discussed what a Momma’s boy my oldest son was. He’s nineteen now, a handsome strapping lad over six-feet tall, but I still remember how he’s cry when I left the room. I still remember how he’d cling to my leg wherever.
I thought about this imagery once again this morning as I read Deuteronomy 11:22, “Be careful to obey all the commands I give you; show love to the Lord you God by walking in his ways and clinging to him.” In other places, this word is translated, “cleave, hold fast, remain true.” God doesn’t want us to passively go about our day, thinking of Him now and again, but to pursue him and hang on to Him—for there is our hope. There is our life.
Jesus only asks this one thing from us . . . our life. To serve and follow him with our heart, soul, and strength. To cling and let Him lead. It is our choice.
This turning over the steering will and stick shift is big stuff, important stuff. It deals with our souls, and living life to the full. And something I question if I understand the seriousness of it. I’m a good person, I tell myself. I love my neighbor (mostly), give to the poor (by taking the stuff I don’t want anyway to Goodwill), and try to follow God, by trying to figure out how serving Him will fit into my day.
And even as I read what I just wrote, I still notice a lot of “I” statement. I try to choose right, I really do. But is that what God wants? I’m walking on His path, yet He wants me to cling. Like the one-year-old that doesn’t want his mom out of his sight and will through a screaming fit if she dares try to use the bathroom alone. Clinging to Christ vs. sashaying along the right path are two totally different things. Serious stuff.
“We do not always hold our faith dear the way that we should,” writes Robert Benson in The Body Broken. “We do not always wrestle and struggle with our beliefs as though they really matter. We are not always quick to hold the way that we live our lives up into the light of the sublimity of our ideas. We do not always realize the potential of those ideas to make us truly one with Christ and one with each other and one with the saints, and one with our own sweet selves, for that matter.”
This is the choice I am making every day.
I’m a pilgrim. Daily I must choose life, choose abundance, and choose to cling. I am striving to listen better. Striving not to be blind and stupid when there’s an all-seeing, all-knowing God who wants more than anything to lead me moment-by-moment.