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A woman and her little girl went in a group to go mountain-climbing near Franschhoek. At a certain stage it seemed very dangerous to the toddler. She sat down and said: “Today I’m going to die, and I so much wanted to be a good little girl.”

Often we know about things in our lives which are not right; relationships which have gone wrong and we refuse to yield, or a certain sin that has a grip on us and which we don’t want to let go. There are things which we would rather postpone. We make many choices, some good but others bad. Until the day arrives when we say: “I so much wanted to be a good little girl/boy.”

God grants us the most important choice of all: the choice for God or against Him. That is, to acknowledge Jesus as the Son of God who died for our sins and earned eternal life for us, or deny it. To make the choice for God is not a choice that we must delay. Many of us “hear” God’s voice every day in what people say to us, in sermons that we hear, or in the wonder of nature that we see. As long as we delay, as long as we hear God’s voice but stubbornly suppress it, it shows that we don’t accept Jesus as our Saviour. A day may come when we say: “I so much wanted …”

The Bible points to the urgency of the choice for God: Seek the LORD while he may be found; call upon him while he is near (Is. 55:6). “If you hear God’s voice today, do not be stubborn” (Heb. 4:7).

We read: We were reconciled to God by the death of his Son (Rom. 5:10). We say that we believe  that Jesus is our Saviour, that He saved us from hell. But do we really believe it? If a parent sees a vehicle rapidly approaching, the parent will sacrifice his life to get the child, who is in danger, away from the oncoming vehicle. Should one ask the same parent whether his child has been saved and belongs to Jesus, he may answer: “I don’t know. I didn’t ask” Does such a person really believe in what Jesus did for us?

We have an obligation towards everyone, especially towards people close to us: God has offered us the promise that we may receive that rest he spoke about. Let us take care that none of you will be found to have failed to receive that promised rest (Heb. 4:1).

Like the little girl on the mountain, we may also find ourselves in dangerous situations where we can say: “Today I’m going to die”. But we have a consolation. David says: If I flew away beyond the east or lived in the farthest place in the west, you would be there to lead me (Ps. 139:9-10). If someone walks on the moon, he can know God is there; God is also in a tunnel deep beneath the earth’s surface. In Chile, 33 mine workers were trapped underground in a mine for 69 days. Campus Crusade for Christ sent them the Bible in sound format and a sound recording of the “Jesus” film, as well as special yellow T-shirts. Eventually they were brought out one by one in a tiny capsule. They wore the T-shirts. On the back was written: “He rules over the whole earth, from the deepest caves to the highest hills” (Ps. 95:4). Many of them went down in the mine without any faith in God whatsoever, but now they all say: “We weren’t 33; we were 34, because Jesus Christ was with us there below.”


Our heavenly Father, we thank You that You are the God of heaven and earth. Help us that we need not say one day: “I so much wanted …” Amen.

Gert Berning