Soon after a children learn to walk they discover the fun to be had when they run away! They enjoyed a similar experience when they were crawling, but now they can run away even faster. So they repeat the experience over and over again, collapsing with laughter when they get caught.
Grown-ups sometimes do the same, but for different reasons. Thinking it’s possible to escape life’s problems and disappointments, we move home, change jobs or get divorced. We ‘run away’, hoping to find happiness elsewhere, only to find that nothing really changes.
As we get older we leave most of our childhood games behind. We might even think the things we were once told about God were childish stories. With so many other matters filling our heads, we don’t stop to ask ourselves just what we really believe. Any thoughts about God, the Bible and religion don’t seem important at all.
Curiously enough, even ‘religious’ people sometimes try to run away from God. The Bible tells us about a man called Jonah who did just that. He thought he could ignore God’s instructions by boarding a ship and sailing away. But he soon discovered his mistake and it almost cost him his life.
We cannot get away from God and its childish to think we can. God always knows where to find us, as the account about Adam and Eve teaches us. They were ashamed because they had disobeyed God and they tried to hide:
“…Adam and his wife hid themselves from the presence of the Lord God among the trees of the garden.” (Genesis 3:8 NKJV)
Genesis tells us that God made everything, so how can we get away from him?
It’s not childish to believe in God. In fact it gets easier to believe in God once we leave childish ideas behind:
“When I was a child, I spoke as a child, I understood as a child, I thought as a child; but when I became a man, I put away childish things.” (1 Corinthians 13:11 NKJV)
Grown-ups have available to them the knowledge and experience that children lack, which can help us believe in God. But not if we ignore the facts and try to run away!
Some people never grow up, spending their entire life ignoring God and refusing to have any contact with religion. Instead they make gods of their own – like expensive homes or demanding jobs.
We can all try to run away from God, even though he made us and we are his ‘children’. We might not love God, but his love for us follows us wherever we go.
Many people don’t love God because they don’t know enough about him. And none of us can be expected to love something or somebody we don’t know anything about! Which is why we’ve got the Bible.
Using true stories, poetry, history and prophecy, the Bible tells us all we need to know about God: his power, his love and his amazing plans. It also gives us God’s ‘guidebook’ which helps us live a peaceful and meaningful life.
The Bible also tells us that God knows all of us an individuals. His love for each of us was seen 2000 years ago when he gave us a real hope for the future – everlasting life in a far better world:
“For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life.” (John 3:16 NKJV)
For a world that’s full of so many terrible things, rather than run away from God – like Jonah did – we can face the future with confidence.
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