All Access Pass

0209. All Access Pass

It is a marketing tool that is now commonly employed. You will get an offer from a company stating you are eligible for, or can upgrade to, an all access pass. This pass is good for full access to extra amenities and perks not associated with the typical consumer purchase. Perhaps it is a courtside seat at the game, or being able to go backstage to meet the performer you want to see. It is like being upgraded to a business or first-class ticket on a flight, and getting every benefit that comes with it, like access to that private lounge you’re used to walking by.

So if all access is a privilege being marketed to us, then we need to ask the following question: What access do we typically have in our everyday lives? When you slightly injure yourself, how easy is it to get immediate care or see your doctor? When you have a question or complaint about a purchase you made online, how easy is it to get a live company representative to resolve the issue quickly? (Bonus question: If you do get a live person, what are the chances they live in the same country you do?) When you go to a government office, like the IRS or DMV, how long do you think you will need to wait in line? If we really think hard about this, we come to realize that our access in this culture is quite limited. True customer service is a thing of the past, and most things are automated today, from ATMs to self-serve checkout stands. Therefore, if everything in our lives is going smoothly, there is an illusion that we have access to everything we need. However, if we find we are in need, what are the chances of getting access to the help we require? This is where the illusion fades away, and we come to realize the only ones with true access are those with power and money. Chris Gardner, whose life was portrayed in the 2006 film The Pursuit of Happyness, sums up this problem succinctly: “In your time of greatest need, the cavalry ain’t coming. You can only count on yourself.”

So if this is the culture we live in, what hope does the average person have? We need to remember that we live in a God-omitted culture, therefore God thinks about this in a very different manner. Access was very similar during the times of ancient Israel. Only priests were allowed in the temple to commune with God, and unless you were of an elite class, which many people were not, then you struggled to make a meager existence, and any unfortunate incident in your life was seen as punishment by God. That all changed when Jesus arrived on the scene. He challenged the way things were being run by those in power, and ended up paying for it with his life. However, something very unusual occurred when Jesus died. In Matthew 27:50-51 (CSB): “But Jesus cried out again with a loud voice and gave up his spirit. Suddenly, the curtain of the sanctuary was torn in two from top to bottom, the earth quaked, and the rocks were split.” The curtain in the temple sanctuary represented the separation of God from man ever since the Garden of Eden. With the curtain now torn in two, it symbolized that the separation between God and man no longer existed, as Jesus paid for our sins with his blood, and created a new bridge, not just for Jews, but for all humankind. In other words, the crucifixion of Jesus gave each and every one of us an all access pass to God.

This all access pass to God exists to this very day, and can be utilized at any time, from January to December, 25 hours a day. We can listen to God through reading the Bible. We can talk to God through prayer. And if we take Jesus as our savior and are reborn again, then we can live with God through the Holy Spirit, for Ephesians 2:18 (CSB) states: “For through him we both have access in one Spirit to the Father.” When the God of infinite power can supernaturally open doors for us, then why do we continually struggle for access in this culture by ourselves? Matthew 7:7 (CSB) states: “Ask, and it will be given to you. Seek, and you will find. Knock, and the door will be opened to you.” And Psalm 145:18 (CSB) states: “The Lord is near all who call out to him, all who call out to him with integrity.” Coming closer to God gives us privileges not just in this world, but in heaven as well. And isn’t that the definition of the all access pass we are all seeking? Ponder that this week.

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