Nerds aren’t known for their dating prowess and I fulfill that stereotype. Since dating wasn’t my forte, I was pretty excited when I got set up on a blind date. That excitement, though, was tempered by the distance I had to travel to pick her up.
I had to drive about 20 miles in order to pick my date. 20 miles is about the maximum distance I’d travel to meet someone I don’t know. Had my blind date lived 25 or 30 miles away, I might have just said no. The date didn’t go that well so maybe I should have.
I don’t want to travel that far to see people I know, much less someone I don’t know. Yet every Christmas I’m reminded of how far the magi traveled in order to see Jesus. The magi were most likely from Babylon and they would have made a 700 mile journey to Bethlehem in order to see Jesus.
Seven hundred miles.
That puts me to shame.
Sometimes I don’t want to drive 10 minutes to church.
Sometimes I don’t want to wake up 15 minutes early in order to spend some time in the word.
Sometimes I don’t want to disconnect from Facebook and pray.
Sometimes I’d rather play Skyrim than engage in life-giving relationships.
If I had been one of the magi (I am “Oriental”) I would have set the cap at about 40 or 50 miles. If the newly born king was 50 miles away I would have gone. Anything more than that, though, and I would have stayed at home and done all sorts of hood rat things with my magi buddies.
We can learn something from the magi.
They were so intentional about seeing Jesus. No distance was too great to keep them from worshiping the newborn Lord. Their effort begs the question: how much effort am I putting into spending time with Jesus? We don’t have to travel 700 miles to spend time with Jesus, but even today it still takes effort and intention. And if we want to really spend time with Jesus, if we want to sit at his feet and worship him just as the magi did, we have to make the effort.
And it will probably turn out better than a blind date.
What encourages you to be intentional in your pursuit of Jesus?