Halfway There

When I was about 13, I spent a weekend in Wales with my friend Alex and her family.  I was looking forward to this because Jeff, her dad, had said he’d take us down to the river.  He’d been promising this for a while, so I went armed with my Wellies, and on Sunday morning we drove the short distance to the river.  The first thing we did was to find a place we could cross.  We started wading through the water, which was getting deeper.  It was almost at the top of my boots.  Because I couldn’t see the way ahead, I had visions of it going over them and me ending up with very wet trousers!  “Jeff,” I said, “can we stop?”  So we stop walking, and this very nervous little English voice says:  “I don’t think I’m going to like this”.


Alex and Jeff, who’d done the crossing before, started laughing.  “You’re ‘alfway there now But!” Jeff shouted.  Sure enough, it got shallower the minute we started walking again and we were soon at the other side.

* * *

There’s a Hillsong song, and the 2nd verse says:
“Into the river I will wade,
“Where my sins are washed away”.  I always think of Jeff when I hear that song, and of the night I became a Christian.


The preacher talked about envy.  “Envy rots the bones,” he said (Proverbs 14:30), and he went on to explain about hell.


I was envious (my sister was having driving lessons at the time), so I thought:  “If that’s true, my bones must have well and truly rotted away” (I don’t think I’m going to like this).


But up in heaven, God the Father must have been thinking:  “You’re halfway there now!” because when we see ourselves for who we really are, we realise our need of a Saviour.


The preacher told us that Jesus could come along, and make those wrong things in our lives disappear.  I knew I needed that, but I said: “Lord, I don’t want to come to You just out of fear”.  That seemed to me a weak thing to do.


I felt Him reply:  “Come because I love you”, and I’ve been a Christian since that night in 1999.

* * *

How about you?  Have you asked Jesus to make the wrong things in your life disappear?  Or, maybe you’re still halfway there.  Maybe when you’ve come into contact with church, all you’ve seen is how bad you are – well that’s not all God sees.  He loves you.  He’s loved you since before you were made, and He’s waiting for your response.  Will you trust Him with your life?


Someone at church this morning encouraged us to think of Jesus not only as our Comforter, but our Challenger. Back home afterwards, I got to thinking of the woman caught in adultery – John 8:1-11.

People often read this passage and focus on the love of God, saying: “Jesus doesn’t condemn”.

They’re right; He doesn’t condemn, but He does ask something of us. “Go, and sin no more”, or “Leave your life of sin”.

For the woman caught in adultery, that must have meant a big change of lifestyle. Presumably, she wouldn’t have committed the sin if there was no attraction there. As followers of Jesus, we don’t stop being tempted, and we’re not suddenly zapped out of the community where we live to start afresh somewhere different. She would’ve had the same people around her, including the man she had feelings for, who’d never met Jesus and may not have wanted things to change.

When she was with Jesus, there was no escaping the fact she could have been stoned to death, and owed Him her very life. But as the days, weeks and months went by, as she looked through the window and saw the man she loved walking down the road … I don’t know about you, but I sometimes wonder what happened to that woman. Did she make it to the end of the race? Is she in heaven now, sharing in Jesus’ glory? Did she allow Him to transform her life, or did she desert Him and go back to the life she’d left behind?

“Leave your life of sin” can be a tremendous challenge, but Jesus is a tremendous Saviour! Just like that woman, we need to remember His part in our lives. Let’s never forget what He did for us that day on the cross. God is a just God; He can’t tolerate sin. We should have been cut off from God for the things we’d done wrong, but God loved us so much, He sent Jesus to take that punishment, so we could be in a loving relationship with Him. Let’s give Him our gratitude, and our love; and with His help, let’s live to please Him.