As a child, I always wanted to go to Disneyland on my birthday.
I still remember making a vow in the backseat of the car, saying to myself that one day, when I became an adult, made my own money, and had my own wheels; I would go to Disneyland every single day. And if I couldn’t do that, then at least I would go twice a week.
Some years ago, someone gave me an annual pass to Disneyland, which meant that I could go any time I wanted. But do you know how many times I actually went? Let’s just say that it wasn’t every day. It wasn’t even twice a week. There was always some reason for not going. Twice a year is more like it.
We have access to God.
We can be that way with our access to the presence of God. We can go into His presence 24/7, anytime we want. Yet how often do we actually do that?
This was a radical concept for the people of Jesus’ day, specifically the Jews. The Gentiles had no hope whatsoever of entering the temple of the living God. Any attempt to do so was punishable by death. The Jews couldn’t go much further. A veil separated the rest of the temple from the Holy of Holies, where only the high priest could enter once a year to meet with God.
The wall between God and man is broken down.
The apostle Paul wrote, “For Christ himself has brought peace to us. He united Jews and Gentiles into one people when, in his own body on the cross, he broke down the wall of hostility that separated us” (Ephesians 2:14 NLT).
Now through Jesus Christ, we have access into that most holy place. For the Jews, the veil has been ripped in two. For the Gentiles, the wall has been knocked down. We can all go into God’s presence because of the blood of Jesus Christ that was shed for us.
It’s a marvelous, incredible truth. But how do we benefit from this unspeakable privilege if we never take advantage of it? In fact, we don’t get to enjoy this wonderful reality simply by talking about it (or writing about it) or pondering about how amazing it is. The benefit comes when we actually enter His presence through the way made for us, bow low before His throne, and find the pleasure of His companionship.
In that moment, we enter into the great reality.
Out of their long and painful journey has come a really helpful survival guide, so to speak. It’s a book called Suffer Strong: How to Survive Anything by Redefining Everything. It’s not just an inspiring story of triumph through trials but a how-to book for accepting God’s plan and recognizing His providence even when it feels like your world is shattered.