We Aspire to Be Close
As we live in our identity as a priest—which means that we are near to God—there are a couple of things that emerge as we look out into the world. One is that we notice when children are hurt, they want to come close to someone who loves them. We notice that teenagers, even though they’re typically happy to be on social media, still think face-to-face is better, to be close to someone is better. For children who have been put in time-out, it’s arguably the worst of human punishments because there's something inhuman about it. You are separated from others and humanity. To be isolated, to die alone, is one of the worst possible curses.
As you look into the world, you realize that closeness and intimacy are the dream or aspiration. Oftentimes it is elusive but it is indeed the aspiration of all humanity. As Christians, we see the world, but we can sort of see through it and see past it to the spiritual realities. And the reality is that we were forged in this intimate environment where God has called us to be near him. All of humanity still bears something of that particular stamp. That’s one thing we see when we see the world.
We were forged in this intimate environment where God has called us to be near him.
Another way that we identify ourselves as God’s priests is not so much what we see but what we do. We are more prone to invite others in to know God. We are saying, I have been close to a person and there could be nothing grander than that, nothing more satisfying, nothing more joyous than that. So draw near with me, come close, and know the author of life himself.
Those are just two ways that our priestly identity affects our vision and our actions.
Edward T. Welch is the author of Created to Draw Near: Our Life as God’s Royal Priests.
I can’t think of anything that is more powerfully comforting than these words: I will never leave you or forsake you.
As God's children, we inherit God’s glorious new world. But more than that, we inherit God himself.
The Song of Songs gives us permission to have a very intimate, affectionate relationship with Jesus.