Live Well, Live Connected

December 15, 2022

Many years ago, I went through a very trying and taxing experience. The anguish and consternation of the ordeal forced me to think long and hard about my connection, or lack thereof, with the Lord.  There are decisive moments in this life when we are compelled to look up instead of around. If you’ve ever lost your connection with heaven momentarily, you’ll completely understand what I am referring to. 

Psalm 51:10 says, “Create in me a clean heart, O God, and renew a steadfast spirit within me.” (NKJV). A clear and clean connection with God is so vital. The devil works feverishly 24/7 to clog up the channels to our soul. The loud conflicting messages of this world, persistent busyness, unhealthy habits, even the urgency of the work we do for the Kingdom, yes even positive things can be negatives if they are replacing our connection with Christ! 

Ellen G. White makes this statement in Steps To Christ: “Deal truly with your own soul. Be as earnest, as persistent as you would be if your mortal life were at stake. This is a matter to be settled between God and your own soul, settled for eternity! A supposed hope and nothing more, will prove to be your ruin.” Referencing once more that most taxing spiritual experience I underwent a number of years ago, I became keenly aware that my connection with Christ was more than faulty. My spiritual arteries were clogged! I needed to undergo spiritual angioplasty. It was not an enjoyable process; it required an opening of the heart to God in full recognition of the resilient rebellion that was like a plaguing plaque residing in my soul. 

The Bible reminds us that the heart is truly deceptive above all things. For a moment, I felt discouraged, downtrodden. But then I went to the Word, and the Lord strengthened me through it. There was also a song that ministered to me during this time. “Redeemed” by the Christian musical group, Big Daddy Weave. The lyrics say: “Seems like all I could see was the struggle. Haunted by ghosts that lived in my past. Bound up in shackles of all my failures. Wondering how long is this gonna last. Then you look at this prisoner and say to me, ‘Son, stop fighting a fight, it’s already been won.’ I am redeemed, You set me free. So I’ll shake off these heavy chains and wipe away every stain, that I’m not who I used to be. I am redeemed, I’m redeemed!”

Although I had been a Christian most of my life, and a Seventh-day Adventist minister for over 25 years at that point, I had been surviving on a faulty and subpar connection. I felt that for the first time I was truly in step with the Lord! We began to talk as friends instead of business associates. It was all in the connection. As my father used to tell me: “Carlos, it’s not what you know, it’s Who you know!” 

I urge you to live connected. There is life and life abundant that is waiting. Don’t wait another day! Live your full life today, filled with the Spirit of God to the full extent!

By Carlos Craig