Dear church,

When you feel as if you’ve been missing God and you feel a nagging pull on your life back toward him, don’t worry. Just go to Him and see what you’ve been missing. Go humbly, with a heart full of repentance.

There is something basic and essential to humans that drives us to do certain things, even when we cannot help it – or perhaps we don’t even see the need to help it. “Like a dog that returns to his vomit is a fool who repeats his folly” (Proverbs 26:11). One of the more visual and disgusting passages in Scripture leaves us hoping we don’t fit that description. 

But we will go back where we belong. Our ways, without the intervention of God, are set. We may stray for a moment, or several moments, but eventually we will return. 

However, the Christian always returns to God. In a certain sense, we simply cannot help but go back to him. Our heart is drawn in His direction.

In Deuteronomy 30, God’s people would be doubly blessed when they repented of their sins and came back to God. It was the “return to the Lord your God” that brought the blessing. And when they came back, God would circumcise their hearts – “so that you will love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul, that you may live.”

We probably make this idea more mysterious than it really is. Circumcision marked out the people of God. It was impossible not to know to whom they belonged. And it was a rite that someone else carried out for a person, and on a person. 

God circumcises hearts by his Holy Spirit (Romans 2:29). This circumcision is more concrete than even the fleshly circumcision of the old covenant. It moves us to love God more and more. The circumcision of our hearts results in action.

And so we go back, again and again, after our falling into sin. We return to the Lord our God. Our hearts are carved in such a way that we really can’t help it. 

Chris

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