But anyone who needs wisdom should ask God, whose very nature is to give to everyone without a second thought, without keeping score.(James 1:5)
By salvation I mean, not barely; according to the vulgar notion, deliverance from hell, or going to heaven; but a present deliverance from sin, a restoration of the soul to its primitive health, its original purity; a recovery of the divine nature; the renewal of our souls after the image of God, in righteousness and true holiness, in justice, mercy, and truth. (John Wesley, A Farther Appeal to Men of Reason and Religion)
We all approach getting from A to B differently. I remember my grandfather pulling a dog-eared atlas from beneath the driver’s seat of his car and smiling as he traced different roads north and south. He dreamed of detours and places to stop and see along different routes.
I can’t remember the last time I checked an atlas. Can you? I type the address into my phone and go the way Google/Waze/Apple Maps sends me, paying little mind to anything beyond “stay in the right lane” or “in 500 feet, turn left.”
This sort of thinking doesn’t just permeate literal navigation, of course. We all make goals and then want to achieve the goals. We want to eat the vegetables more than we want to kneel in the mud to pull weeds or carry water. We want to stand on the podium with the heavy medal around our necks more than we want to train. We want to submit the taut, page-turner of a manuscript more than we want to write. Whatever your goal is, there are likely steps between you and it that seem like less fun than the destination.
The Wesleyan view of salvation invites you and me into seeing everything differently. This day is part of a lifetime of God inviting us into restoration and renewal, a process of perfection that will result in everyday holiness and joy. It’s beautiful to consider. Wherever you are heading today, pause and reflect on the invitation in your hands already to greater depths of relationship with God today.
Keep the Faith,