“. . . I have loved you with an everlasting love; therefore with lovingkindness I have drawn you” (Jeremiah 31:3).

WHEN WE SEEK GOD, WE CAN BE SURE THAT HE HAS ALWAYS BEEN SEEKING US, AND IT IS WITH DILIGENCE THAT HE HAS DONE SO. Knowing of God’s earnestness toward us, we should turn toward Him with all the more gratitude and carefulness. “If God is diligent, surely we ought to be diligent in doing our duty to him. Think how patient and how diligent God has been with us!” (Oswald Chambers).

Lest there be any misunderstanding, it needs to be emphasized that we can never reciprocate God’s love in any way that would be complete or even adequate. Our best efforts to respond to God’s diligence are broken and marred. Even if we were sinless, as creatures we would still not be able to attend to our Creator in the same way that He attends to us. And having sinned, we surely cannot deserve the earnestness of the love He has shown to us. In one sense, all of our human deeds are trifles.

Yet the frailty of our condition should not keep us from doing what we can do, and that is to be moved by God’s love. We can choose to be responsive rather than unresponsive. We can hear His voice. We can answer His call. And knowing that God has never trifled with us ought to make us determine, out of sheer gratitude, to take Him seriously. Knowing what our atonement cost Him, how can we simply dabble in religion? Trifling with God is the most horrible form of ingratitude.

Words are interesting things, and we can often be enlightened by their history. Originally the word “trifle” meant trickery or deceit. To trifle was to say or do something that one did not really mean, pretending to be serious. Today the verb “trifle” means (1) to deal with something as if it were of little significance or value, (2) to speak or act with little seriousness or purpose, or (3) to play or toy with something. When we trifle with God, is there not a bit of the old meaning of the word in our actions? When we pretend to love Him dearly but give Him no more than our leftovers, is it some trick we are trying to play on God? Do we think He does not notice our lack of seriousness?

“God is earnest with you. Why are you not so with Him? Why trifle with God?” (Oswald Chambers).

Gary Henry – WordPoints.com

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