He reached down from on high and took hold of me; he drew me out of deep waters. – Psalm 18:16
The Lord wants so much to take hold of each and every one of us. Our Lord wants to hold us fast and draw us to Himself. Our Lord opens His loving, everlasting arms to us so He may save us, protect us, lead us and transform us. Our God loves us beyond our comprehension, but not beyond His own willingness to sacrifice His righteous life for the forgiveness of our sins. Our Lord doesn’t want anyone to be eternally separated from Him by rejecting the salvation He freely offers to us, yet which cost Him so much.
The Lord…is patient with you, not wanting anyone to perish, but everyone to come to repentance. – 2 Peter 3:9
The Lord patiently waits for us to choose to let Him take hold of us with His great gift of salvation. Even as we stay in our sins, our hate, our hateful ways and reject our holy God who passionately pursues us with His love – our Lord remains patient.
This day, October 18, marks the anniversary of the eternal birthday of my dad. In 2002, my dad, at age seventy-three, finally let God take hold of him after living most of his life in stubborn and cruel defiance of God and God’s righteous and loving ways. And many more than just Dad suffered because of the evil choices he made.
Yet there was God. Waiting patiently and wanting passionately to take hold of my dad. Jesus had already died for Dad. Nothing more needed to be accomplished for Dad to be born as a child of God, to be fully forgiven, to be saved and given eternal life with the Father. Jesus had accomplished it all. There is no other sufficient, acceptable sacrifice, offering or action that could bring forgiveness and salvation to my dad – or to me or to anyone else – except for the blood of Jesus poured out on the cross.
God made him who had no sin to be sin for us, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God. – 2 Corinthians 5:21
Jesus had accomplished it all. God just needed Dad to finally acknowledge his need for the forgiveness that cost Jesus His life. Dad just needed to finally acknowledge his need for God to take hold of him. On October 18, 2002, my dad did just that. And God took hold of my dad and drew him out of the deep waters of chaos and condemnation. That day God took hold of my dad through the great gift of salvation that comes only through the righteous sacrifice of Jesus.
Four years later, God took hold of my dad and escorted him away from all the chaos and deep waters that exist on this side of heaven. God brought Dad into his eternal home to live and walk with Him in peace along the river of life that flows from the throne of God.
May each of us let the Lord take hold of us! And take hold of us tightly – for ourselves and for each of the precious people whose lives we affect, now and in future generations, by the choices we make!