Here is another one from my son, Jonathan:
Sometimes, when I'm feeling disconnected from God, or spiritually stagnant, I have a hard time figuring out how to resolve the issue. I can sense the problem but I am not sure how to rectify it. Most Christians encounter this feeling from time to time and probably more than just myself start to think that the way to turn things around is to give something up. The notion of sacrifice. Whether it be fasting, devotion of time, or any kind of sacrifice, it just seems like that's what needs to be done in order to get myself back kneeling before the throne of God. Yet, if we were to look at how seldom or how temporal that method works, it must mean that something is wrong with the premise. And then I realized the whole basis is out of whack. I should not be trying to sacrifice so that I can come before God; I should be sacrificing myself to God, and He will decide what needs to be changed in my life. The urgency to sacrifice to make oneself clean before God is almost like tossing a dog a bone. We are too frightened to actually face the unbridgeable gap between our sin and our God, that we use sacrifice as a deterrent. "Well, I can't come before God while my soul is in this condition" or "Certainly you don't expect me to try and help other people towards Christ when I am in such a state. That's hypocritical!" Don't you see? We are fallen. The only way to come sanctified and cleansed before God is to come before Him when we are dirty and broken. How clever it is to use our own desire to return to a stronger relationship with God as an excuse to stay away from Him until we "feel" prepared to serve Him properly. And what is lost? The time between trying to get right with God and actually figuring out that you can't and have to plod on anyway, all that time where so much good could have been accomplished has withered away.