Reach

“Reach!” The word means to stretch. It implies an inconvenience. It involves movement. You can’t lean back, relax, get comfortable and then reach. To reach means you must give up some of that comfort — at least for the moment.
Reaching involves a little extra effort to get to something you want. How much extra energy you are willing to spend depends on how badly you want what you’re reaching for. The more it means to you, the farther you are willing to stretch. You might even stretch until it hurts.
It’s not convenient to “reach” up to God to find the hand He so lovingly extends to us. It can be inconvenient to reach out to other people who so desperately need to know someone cares. It’s not even easy to reach within ourselves to find our true feelings and values.
There is, however, no more important way for us to spend our energy than to reach for a life that is pure, clean, and faithful to God. It may seem like a lot of trouble, but it’s worth it!
When we cease reaching, we stop growing. Paul said, “Not that I have already obtained it or have already become perfect, but I press on so that I may lay hold of that for which also I was laid hold of by Christ Jesus. Brethren, I do not regard myself as having laid hold of it yet; but one thing I do: forgetting what lies behind and reaching forward to what lies ahead, I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus” (Phil. 3:12-14).
This was the Paul who had become an apostle, was inspired by the Holy Spirit, had borne persecution and scars for Jesus, and who did not know whether he would die for Christ or not (Phil. 1:21-24).
Are you still growing? For what are you reaching and stretching? Do you press on? Have you learned all you wished to know? Have you prayed every prayer you should pray? Have you touched every neighbor? Have you taught every class you’ll ever teach?
There is yet so very much to accomplish for the Lord that none of us can afford to sit back and let the world go by. The lost are crying for you to reach out to them. The missionaries are crying for help. There is still so much truth to teach, so many souls to save, and so much kindness to give. Let us not live such easy lives that we forget to reach up and out.

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Phil Sanders

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