Movin' On Up

1 Peter 1:15 But just as he who called you is holy, so be holy in all you do.

Hayleigh (then 4), Hannah (then 7) and I had struck out for a day of shopping at the mall. After completing all the necessary stops on the first floor, it was time to move on to the second floor. As we approached the escalator, I looked down at Hayleigh and said, "Now hold Mommy's hand when we get on, okay?". With resolute eyes glazed over with determination she stalwartly shot back, "I can do it myself." I possessed a measure less confident in her escalator navigating abilities but nonetheless concluded to allow her to try.

Hannah and I entered the escalator first expecting Hayleigh to follow right in step. Instead she panicked and stood frozen at the bottom as Hannah and I diminished in size as we moved further away. As Hannah and I rode the sister escalator back down to retrieve her the thought struck me that she had been left behind not by incapability or even a lack of confidence but by a refusal to accept the help she needed.

This morning I am reading 1 Peter 1. Peter's first letter contains a verse that overwhelms me each time I read it. "But just as he who called you is holy, so be holy in all you do." (Verse 15) This verse is a high calling for only God Himself is truly holy. To me that calling seems as distant from who I am as the top platform is from the bottom of the escalator. The idea of becoming more like Jesus seems possible but when I actually strike out to do it I find myself frozen and incapable of moving closer to Him.

Perhaps this is because I think I can do it myself. I stand at the bottom of the escalator full of determination but not knowing how to take that first step of faith off the platform. What I really need is the person on the step just above me to reach back, take my hand and guide me to where they've just been. I, in turn, then can turn around a find someone waiting to step onto the escalator. To me, this is what Christ meant when he said, "Therefore go and make disciples" (Matthew 28:19).

The person standing at the bottom thinks they can do it alone when in reality they simply need to take the hand of the person one step ahead. I am not perfect. And certainly no one would label me holy. Today instead of staying frozen where I am, I can reach out and take the hand of that person whose love for Jesus is a step ahead of mine and allow them to teach me how they got to that step. Perhaps you like Hayleigh are stuck at the bottom watching friends and family fade into the distance. You want to know God but just don't know how. Today I'm reaching my hand out to you. Take that first step onto God's escalator by confessing to Him how you have totally messed up your life without Him, how desperately you need His forgiveness and how with child-like faith you believe that Jesus died to right what you have wronged.

Jesus, thank you for never being content to leave me like I am. Today I acknowledge that I still need to change and become more like You. Thank you for friends who You have sent to help me take that next step of faith to become less like me and more like You. It is with joy that I reach out and take their hand.

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