Time spent preparing for and teaching students "Why must we be born again?" left me marveling at God's love toward me. He chose not to leave me for dead - dead in my sins with my heart of stone, a child of wrath, a slave to sin, unable to see, unable to accept the Gospel - it was folly to me. My natural self without a saving faith in Christ Jesus - I embraced darkness, loved it, desired it. The light I hated, shunned. So did you, perhaps so do you.
" were dead in your trespasses and sins in which you once walked, following the course of this world, following the prince of the power of the air, the spirit that is now at work in the sons of disobedience - among whom we all once lived in the passions of our flesh, carrying out the desires of the body and the mind, and by nature were children of wrath, like the rest of mankind.
BUT God, being rich in mercy, because of the great love with which he loved us, even when we were dead in or trespasses, made us alive together in Christ - by grace you have been saved - " Ephesians 2:1-6
Because of His great love, His grace - he caused a new life in me. My eyes were open to see that thing that I cuddled, held dear to my heart, convinced others was a treasure was, indeed a cockroach all along.
My putrid sin made clear, in disgust I want it no more. I fling the cockroach in disbelief that that was what I held so dear. God has given me a desire for the light, truth, Himself. That is why we must be born again - a work of God, not of myself.
Thought to ponder, prayer to pray - May God open our hearts (take from us a heart of stone and give us a heart of flesh) so that we see clearly the cockroach we cuddle, and cause us to want it no more. What am I cuddling?