The Pursuit of God to Bring Us Into the Family of God

About a year ago I helped lead worship for a conference with a “one another" theme which joined predominately black and predominantly white churches together, at which I shared the following. Looking at my calendar, at some point I realized the date of this conference, which met not a mile from where I grew up, was on or near the anniversary of the day in 1997 when my life was about to take a dramatic turn, as there in my bedroom the Lord distinctly commanded me to stop the sin I was committing. I’ve shared before how I stubbornly tried to fight Him, but He persisted until I finally accepted the love of God in Jesus.

Ironically, on Easter last year in that very same house, I was informed by my mom, who was adopted as a baby, that she had just discovered some family members, blood related siblings we never knew about before. This is still a lot to process, and plenty more has been discovered since then. But I continue to find all of this coming together to reflect the picture of God’s pursuit of His people in many ways.

It does at times distress me to recall how I initially rejected the Lord’s love as I did, but I realize the story of God as Pursuer is true for everyone who comes to believe in Jesus. Perhaps (and hopefully) you aren’t as stubborn as me, but if you know Him this is your story too. He pursued each of us to His own shame and death, taking our sins on the cross with a love that will not let us go. (Romans 8:38-39)

At the same time, when He calls us into the Kingdom He also calls us into a broad and vast family, much like we saw at that conference and others like it. (1 Peter 2:9-10) We suddenly realize we have brothers and sisters, mom and dads, grandparents and cousins we never knew we had, and from more and varied backgrounds then we can possibly fathom.

We can also love because He first loved and pursued us. (1 John 4:7-21) We can be imagers of God in our pursuit of others to call them into that same Kingdom and family.

I don’t know what your experience of pursuit is, but I find it can often lend to rejection. It’s hard. And it makes me even more grateful for the Lord’s persistence in my own stubbornness even to this day.

But I’ve also had the honor and privilege to pursue others who did allow me to pursue them, and to witness miracles, including marriages unmistakably restored by the Lord. The same week of that conference I held a baby who serves as a continual reminder of such a miracle for which I cannot stop thanking Him.

As I shared at that conference, the Lord will pursue His people through His people to bring them into His Kingdom family. Anyone He wants to save and any situation He wants to restore will, indeed, be saved and restored.

Thank you, Lord, for your relentless love and persistence in bringing us home.

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