“Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit,and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age” (Matt 28.19-20 NIV) (emphasis added).
When my twin sister and I were five years old and finishing our last year of pre-school, our mom signed us up for an overnight campout. Tents, food and fun were provided; and all we needed to bring was a sleeping bag and an overnight bag. I was so excited! When we arrived, my mom walked us to one of the camping attendants to check us in. After a few moments, my mom knelt down and gave me the most alarming news of my young life: My twin would not be staying with me.
For the duration of my camping trip, I did not say a single word. I observed the movement around me like I was having an out of body experience. I remember watching three girls in my tent talking and laughing, and I just stared at them like a deer in headlights. One girl kept shining her flashlight at my face, and the girls would whisper and giggle. The girl finally tried to ask me a question, but I gaped and said nothing. It was as if I had been given a new set of eyes, and everything I saw was strange and dreamlike.
The next morning I got out of my tent and stood outside until an adult asked me if I was hungry. I nodded my head, and he led me to the breakfast station. I sat alone eating pancakes, while my brain worked overtime trying to figure out if I was supposed to engage in life without my twin. Luckily, my mom came to retrieve me a few hours later. On the way home, my twin talked excitedly about all that she had done with Mom, and I sat quietly unable to understand or communicate my altered reality encounter.
As my intimacy with God grows, I’ve noticed that my dependency on Him has become my new reality. I can’t function without relying on the Three Persons of my Creator. God is my Father. Jesus is my Savior. The Holy Spirit is my Counselor. God has beautifully chosen to interact with me in three distinct and wonderul ways; and I’m learning to know and relate with each Person of the Godhead.
God created me and knows me. He has given me a preordained purpose for my life. He loves me like a perfect parent and expects great things for me. He is Controller of the Universe, yet He cares about the small moments of my day. “Jesus said to them, ‘If God were your Father, you would love me, for I have come here from God. I have not come on my own; God sent me’” (John 8.42 NIV).
Jesus has been tempted with sin and carried its weight on the cross. He has walked in flesh and knows what I’m going through. He prays for me and gives me strength to live in a world and body corrupted by sin. His righteousness covers me, so I can commune with a Holy God. “For in Christ all the fullness of the Deity lives in bodily form, and in Christ you have been brought to fullness. He is the head over every power and authority” (Col 2.9-10 NIV).
The Holy Spirit guides and teaches me. He unlocks the promises of the Bible and applies them to my life. He dwells within me and whispers correction and praise into my heart. He uses the stories of my life to grow me into the image of Christ. “And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another advocate to help you and be with you forever—the Spirit of truth. The world cannot accept him, because it neither sees him nor knows him. But you know him, for he lives with you and will be in you” (John 14.16-17 NIV).
God loves me so much that He offers Himself to me in three unique ways, so that I may better know the richness of His nature. I desire my life to be so engulfed in His fullness that I’m unable to engage in living without His presence. I pray that my days are so completely wrapped up in God that every interaction, thought and word I speak has the sweet aroma of His glory and His Spirit. I want my reality to be solidly fixed on Him, so I fear His absence in my choices more than I fear the opinions of others, the impossibility of circumstance or the enormity of my faith-steps.