How to Have Intimacy with God
You have the opportunity to have a personal relationship with God. It is as easily available to you as God’s promises are to others. That is, more than anything else, God’s call to you to have personal relationship with him is the thing that is putting your faith to the test (James 1:2–4).
The Heart of Intimacy
Intimacy is the sensation of truly knowing and being known by another person, and it is defined as follows: When we talk about this experience, we commonly utilize spatial language to describe it. An intimate friend is someone to whom we feel extremely close and who knows us on a deeply personal level. If anything happens to our buddy that causes them to lose closeness with us, they will feel distant from us. Alternatively, a person who does not know us well at all yet knows us on a superficial level.
We all know what it’s like to be sitting right next to someone with whom we feel distant and what it’s like to be sitting right next to someone with whom we feel close to someone who is four thousand miles away.
- Otherwise, it merely serves to bolster our sense of superiority.” What is it that makes us feel close to another individual?
- However, one ingredient that is universal to all of them is trust.
- Intimacy is built on the foundation of trust.
- The degree to which intimacy is lost in a relationship is proportional to the degree to which trust has been eroded.
The Heart of Intimacy with God
It is the sensation of knowing and being known by another person that we refer to as intimacy. When expressing this experience, we typically utilize spatial metaphors. An intimate friend is someone with whom we have a strong emotional connection and who knows us well. If anything occurs that causes our buddy to feel disconnected from us, they will feel distant from us as a result of this. Another possibility is that a person who does not know us well at all is familiar with us on a surface level.
As humans, we understand what it’s like to be seated right next to someone with whom we feel distant, and we can also understand what it’s like to be near to someone who is thousands of miles away.
In every other case, it just serves to increase our sense of superiority.” So, what is it that makes us feel close to someone else?
However, one ingredient that is present in all intimate relationships is trust.
When it comes to intimacy, trust is key. More we put our faith in someone, the closer we allow them to get into our lives. The degree to which intimacy is lost in a relationship is proportional to the degree to which trust is damaged.
Intimacy Is More Than Knowledge
One widespread erroneous assumption is that attaining closer proximity to God may be accomplished via the collection of knowledge. Of course, in order to get to know God more personally, we must first learn some basic facts about him. As Jesus stated in John 8:32, “you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free,” and he also pointed out that many people idolize what they do not understand (John 4:22). However, never before in the history of the Christian church has such a wealth of theological information been made available to such a large number of people as it is now.
We have a plethora of Bible translations, excellent books, thought-provoking articles, recorded sermons, interviews, movies, documentaries, music, and more at our fingertips.
It is quite appropriate for us to express our gratitude.
It was for this reason that Jesus said to the religious leaders of his day, some of whom had an encyclopedic knowledge of Scripture, “You search the Scriptures because you believe that in them you will find eternal life; and it is they who bear witness about me; yet you will not come to me in order to receive life.” (See also John 5:39–40.) When it comes to boosting our faith in God, biblical knowledge is far superior to gold because it increases our connection with God (Psalm 19:10).
However, when biblical knowledge takes the place of faith in God, it simply serves to increase our sense of self-importance (1 Corinthians 8:1).
Why Aesthetic Experiences Fail
In addition, many people make the error of attempting to establish connection with God through subjective artistic experiences. We may refer to this as a “Field of Dreams” approach, in which we believe that if we create the perfect setting, God will show up. This is something that some people pursue in high liturgical situations that are intended to generate a sensation of transcendence and mystery. Others seek it out in modern worship activities that are intended to generate a feeling of immanence in the listener.
If we put our faith in God, such settings can help us develop a closer relationship with him.
“God is more impressed by our faith than he is by our achievements.” As an example, consider the following: a candlelit supper with romantic music may promote a lovely moment of relational closeness between a husband and wife, but only to the extent that the surroundings promote and develops their mutual trust and love.
Because of a lack of trust between them, there is a relationship barrier between them that cannot be bridged by the aesthetics alone. That can only be accomplished by reestablishing confidence.
How We Draw Near to God
God’s will for our lives is clearly laid out in the Bible: we draw near to him through faith in Christ, who alone provides access to him (Hebrews 4:14–16; 7:25; Philippians 3:19), and we put our trust in all of “his precious and very great promises,” which find their Yes to us in Christ (Hebrews 4:14–16; 7:25; Philippians 3:9). (2 Peter 1:4; 2 Corinthians 1:20). God is more impressed by our faith than he is by our achievements. Where faith is weak, he is dissatisfied with the quantity of our information or the quality of our aesthetically pleasing activities.
(See also Hebrews 11:6) Whenever God sees someone whose heart completely trusts in his promises and who lives according to them, God comes to powerfully encourage that saint (2 Chronicles 16:9) and manifests himself to him: “Whoever possesses my commandments and maintains them, he it is who loves me.” Moreover, anyone who loves me will also be loved by my Father, and I will love him and show myself to him.
(See also John 14:21)
God’s Invitation to Intimacy
“What you must trust God for the most right now is the direction in which he wants you to move toward him.” God want to have a personal relationship with you. Christ has already completed all of the difficult work on the cross in order to make it feasible. All he asks is for you to trust in him and follow his instructions (John 14:1). He want for you to place your whole faith in him (Proverbs 3:5). As a result, his invitation to you to share closeness with him is being tested more than anything else in your life by the providences that have intervened in your life.
It is most likely an invitation that your flesh would want you to turn down.
And do they not agree with Paul that the delight of knowing Christ and the approaching glory (Philippians 3:8; Romans 8:18) are incomparably greater than anything they could ever imagine?
In Philippians 4:6–7, the Bible describes heaven on earth as the indescribable pleasure and the peace that exceeds all comprehension that come from fully relying in God.
Intimacy With God: The Way to True Fulfillment
I’d want to make a confession. Chick flicks, or movies in which Mr. Right meets Miss Right, they fall in love, go through a crisis that causes their relationship to fall apart, and then reconcile with a kiss, are among my favorite genres. These films appeal to me because they relate to a need I have for romantic love that is buried deep inside me. However, I am well aware that even if I were to experience the passionate love of the movies, I would never be completely satisfied since it is not the ultimate ambition of mankind or the pinnacle of contentment.
Instead, it is to love God with all of one’s heart (Matt. 22:37-40). We can find contentment in His love in a way that no other person can deliver. Take these methods to assist you in developing a close, intimate love connection with the Almighty.
Step One: Embrace the Truth That Intimacy With God Has No Contenders
One of my girlfriends was feeling lonely and disappointed that God had not provided her with her biggest desire: a spouse. She was 40 and had never married. She was tired of praying and waiting and waiting and waiting, but most of all, she was sure that her life was somehow less-than-others’ lives. With great emphasis, she declared, “Being single is not the abundant life!” I could definitely relate to the heartbreaking feelings of being the lone girl who didn’t have a date to the prom, something I experienced several times.
- But what about a lack of rich life?
- A thief comes to take from people and destroy their possessions, but I have come so that they may have life, and enjoy it to its fullest extent.” The wordlife sprang off the page at me.
- I discovered the following prescription for my friend’s heart condition in the definition: God, rather than a romantic relationship with a man, is the source of rich life for both of us.
- (emphasis mine.) Christ bestows upon the Saints everything that is greatest and finest that He is.
- I feel it deep within me.
- In the spirit of things.
- Christ the Son of God.
- The definition ofzoe(life) demonstrates that genuine abundant life is found only inside Christ himself, as evidenced by the definition ofzoe(life).
- Romantic love, on the other hand, will never be able to compete with an intimate love connection with God.
Step Two: Accept That a Fulfilling Intimate Love Relationship With God is Personal
God’s relationship with us is so personal, so deep, that certain things can only be felt with the heart, and cannot be explained with words. This is how true closeness with God feels; we have the impression that no one else can truly appreciate the extraordinary tie that we have with Him since it is entirely personal to both of us. This is how I feel about my connection with Christ. He has comforted me when I have sobbed, directed me, taught me, reprimanded me, guided me, and loved me through it all.
Except for myself and my Savior, no one else could comprehend the intensity of my connection with Him.
This is because God’s connection with us is personal.
He doesn’t need you to alter who you are before you come to Him; all He wants is that you come as you are, confess your sins to Him, realize your need to have your sins forgiven, and accept His gift of forgiveness that He has made available to you by His death on the cross (Matt.
27:1-66, 2 Cor. 5:21). After you have completed this, you may begin a life-long dialogue with Him, which is a part of the wealth ofzoe that you have received.
Step Three: Talk With God
Just as a close connection with another person necessitates discussion, so does a close relationship with God. Reading the Bible (which is His primary means of communication with people who love Him) and praying are two ways to communicate with Him and learn more about Him (a two-way conversation between you God). You should remember that when you pray, God is not asking you to follow a formula and He does not want you to pretend to be someone or something you are not. In order to appear “religious,” He does not want you to exclusively praise Him, never ask Him for anything, or use certain terms to make oneself appear “religious.” Instead, He just wishes for you to communicate with Him like you would with a trustworthy friend about whatever is on your mind and heart (1 Peter 5:6-8).
Keep in mind, though, that it takes time to learn how to hear Him properly the first time.
However, the more you learn who God is via His Word and the more your thinking is transformed, the more you will be able to differentiate when He is speaking to you and when He is not speaking to you (Rom.
Step Four: Spend Time With Others Who Believe in Christ
When I reflect on my relationship with Jesus since I first encountered Him more than two decades ago, I’m not sure where I would be if it weren’t for the love and support of other lovely believers who served as models for me. One woman became a friend of mine and taught me a great deal about the Christian faith. She demonstrated His love for me by reading the Bible (His Word) with me, encouraging me, and interceding for me. I’m not sure how I would have dealt with many of the challenges I experienced during one particularly difficult period if it hadn’t been for her kindness and concern.
This was something I saw with a friend.
Look for a spiritual mentor, participate in a Bible study in a Bible-believing church, or become a member of a Christian discipleship group to get started.
Step Five: Be Patient
Finally, keep in mind that, just as building closeness with another person takes time, growing intimacy with God takes time as well. In addition, as you learn to rely on Him and accept the truth of His Word, your love affair with Him will become more and more gratifying, and an abundance ofzoe will blossom inside your heart and soul.
Intimate With Jesus
These comments were not offered as a reproach or even as a surprise; rather, Jesus was inviting Philip to come closer to him. Jesus, on the other hand, is the final person we get to know intimately. Before the Day of Pentecost, the disciples recognized Jesus as the One who had given them the authority to cast out demons and bring about a revival (seeLuke 10:18-20). Even if it had been a great closeness, there was a far deeper intimacy to come: “.I have called you friends.” (See also John 15:15.) True friendship is a scarce commodity on our planet.
- It is the goal of our entire life experience to equip us to come into this most intimate connection with Jesus Christ.
- “It is in your best interests that I go.” Jesus explained.
- He quit that connection in order to bring them even closer together.
- The Bible consistently demonstrates that the visible fruit of a personal connection with Jesus Christ is the visible effect of that relationship (seeJohn 15:1-4).
- While we cannot avoid being viewed as too emotional or pathetic, we may pour out our emotions to Him on a regular basis.
- When you allow Jesus to fulfill you in every aspect of your life, you will experience this result.
- Please share this devotional with a friend.
- Despite the fact that we have no control over the circumstances that surround us, we do have control over how we allow those circumstances to influence us; we can either allow them to completely dominate our lives or allow them to change us into the people God desires us to be.
Do I Truly and Intimately Know Jesus Christ?
Do I actually know Jesus Christ, or do I only have a passing familiarity with Him? Is it my desire to have an ongoing, deeper relationship with Him, or am I content with my existing degree of connection with Him? Is it possible that my spirit is restlessly seeking a more personal understanding of Him? Do I put into practice everything I’ve learned in my life, or am I happy with a passing familiarity with Him? We might be able to:
- Recognize the scriptures that describe Him and explain His superiority over all other gods. But do we really know Him as a person? Seek His personal touch and find out. However, do we spend quality time in His presence and do we delight in singing His praises? Is it true that we are as fast to submit to His will and ask for His blessings? Nevertheless, we accept His sorrows with equal eagerness, and we are familiar with His healing. But, do we seek His change in our lives?
Prioritizing The Main Thing
The inquiries are as shocking as they are genuine in their content. The desire to move beyond superficial acquaintanceship and into deeper intimacy is the same as it is in any other relationship: it must be valued. A need that is so strong that it competes with no one and nothing but itself. Jesus’ direct response to the superficiality of familiarity should dispel any doubts about his desire for close personal relationships with people. These people get close to Me with their mouths, respect Me with their lips, yet their hearts are far away from Me (Matthew 15:8).
And so, how can we avoid falling into such shallowness while improving our understanding and developing our relationship with Jesus?
We advance from the infancy of a fresh connection with Jesus to the self-denial of total devotion to His will with each step we take.
That I May Gain Christ
To acquire Christ is to win or obtain His favor and fellowship, which is synonymous with salvation. This does not imply any kind of work-based endeavor. The opposite is true: it is a proactive engagement, fuelled by a deliberate desire and a purposeful pursuit of a greater connection with Christ. It is the rejection of the status quo and the fevered yearning for something better in life. As a result, it is possible to discern between the exhilaration of a new relationship and the search of deeper connection.
A husband and wife’s love for one another serves as the foundation of their relationship.
A deeper closeness, on the other hand, goes beyond all of that.
Intimate lovers purposefully become closer than in any other type of relationship.
It also entails being acquainted with Him and yielding to His will. As Lazarus’ sister, Mary, we are privileged to be in His presence and to receive His essence. When we follow Christ and grow in connection with Him, the greater favor and fellowship we get from others.
That I May Be Found in Him
To be discovered in Christ implies that no one who knows me will be startled by my affiliation with Jesus or my study of His person and teachings. My identity in and faithfulness to Him are confirmed by any inquiry into or observation of my life, whether it is before or after His return or until my death. A husband and wife are constantly together, affiliated with each other, and devoted to each other, and this should come as no surprise to anyone. These are the kinds of behaviors that come with being in a married relationship.
As a result of my knowing and following Jesus, it follows that He has also come to know and seek me out.
“We have received the Holy Spirit, who has poured forth the love of God into our hearts” (Romans 5:5).
In response to His love for me, I am able to love Him in return and to want for a higher level of closeness with Him.
That I May Know Him
We get to know Him better as we gather more information via our own personal experiences. To get to know someone well, it is necessary to spend quality time with that individual in a range of settings and situationsal situations. This encompasses not just birthdays and weddings, but also heartbreaks and deaths as well. Wives and husbands, who are madly in love with one another, are always on one other’s minds. They tell each other humorous tales, ask one other questions, and call each other just to hear the other’s voice for no apparent reason.
- They take pleasure in being in close proximity to one another.
- As we incorporate Jesus into our life on a daily basis, we get to know Him more and better.
- It is a never-ending exchange of information and conversation with Him, as well as unceasing prayer.
- Not only do we incorporate what we learn from His Word, but we also relinquish whatever that stands in the way of our connection with Him.
That I May Know the Power of His Resurrection
We get to know Him better as we obtain more information and experience. It takes time and effort to get to know someone well. This requires spending quality time with that person in a variety of settings and scenarios. Not only do birthdays and marriages count, but so do heartbreaks and deaths as well. Marriage is a constant state of mind for spouses, who are madly in love with one another. She and her friend exchange amusing tales and inquire about one another’s lives. They also phone each other just to hear the sound of their voices.
In one other’s company, they take pleasure in being close.
As we incorporate Jesus into our life, we get to know Him more and more on a daily basis.
It is a never-ending exchange of information and conversation with Him, as well as nonstop prayer.
Passionately knowing about Him is part of this goal. Not only do we incorporate what we learn from His Word, but we also relinquish whatever that stands in the way of our connection with Him, including ourselves. In keeping His commands, we know that we are in the presence of God (1 John 2:3).
That I May Know the Fellowship of His Sufferings
Knowing the fellowship of Jesus’ sufferings entails a relationship, involvement, and cooperation with His stigma in this world, which is a difficult concept to grasp. According to Jesus, “I picked you out of all the people in the world, thus the people in the world hate you” (John 15:19). This continual clash between His light and the world’s longing for darkness is a source of great concern (2 Corinthians 6:14). Intimately following Jesus entails gleefully adopting His type of leadership. His sufferings encompass the difficulties and adversity that Christians face as a result of their commitment to Christ’s cause.
We can take consolation in knowing that He is “familiar with pain” (Isaiah 53:3), “close to people who are brokenhearted” (Psalm 34:18), and sympathizes with us during our times of grief, adversity, and difficulty (Hebrews 4:15).
We are the ones who own it, live it, and declare it.
Christ’s disciples suffer every misfortune that comes their way with courage and humility, just as his wife accepts her husband’s surname with pride in her marriage.
That I May be Conformed to His Death
Conforming to His death entails being made comparable to, or completely participating in, his death. It is the deliberate death to one’s self, the walking in the Holy Spirit, and the coming to life in Christ. To be more specific, Paul stated, “I have been crucified with Christ; it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me” (Galatians 2:20). We resign ourselves to His will and sovereign orchestration of our lives, and we do so voluntarily. We are grateful for anything He provides. As He departs, we quickly surrender our hold on things.
- In our close and passionate involvement with Jesus, we courageously declare, “Though He slay me, yet will I trust Him” (Job 13:15), knowing that when “He has tested me, I shall come forth as gold” (Proverbs 3:5).
- To complete his change, he must polish it step by step.
- Old things have gone away; He brings all things to a new beginning (2 Corinthians 5:17).
- Nonetheless, even after physical death, we continue to delight in Him because “I shall be content when I awake in Your likeness,” as the Bible says (Psalm 17:15).
- The relationship with Him is much more than just a surface level one.
Also important is that it is about more than just religion or belonging to a certain denomination. Knowing Jesus for who He truly is is a lifelong path of more profound interaction with Him that prepares us for an eternity spent with Him in His presence.
I pray that we would consciously and passionately get to know You more and better each day, Dear Heavenly Father. May we come to know Jesus so well that we begin to bear His likeness as a symbol of Your love and as a witness to our association with You in our daily lives. Please assist us in embracing Your identity, strength, and sorrows with the same zeal that we do. May we come to know You as intimately as You are familiar with us. Please assist us in bearing Your family resemblance. This is being asked in Your name.
How to Develop a Closer Relationship With God
Growing in spiritual maturity, Christians thirst for a deep relationship with God and Jesus, but they are also perplexed as to how to achieve this goal in the most effective way possible.
Keys to Having an Intimate Relationship With God
What steps may you take to become closer to an unseen God? How can you carry on a discussion with someone who isn’t able to respond to your questions? Our consternation begins with the word “intimate,” which has become devalued as a result of our society’s preoccupation with sex and sexuality. The nature of an intimate connection, particularly with God, necessitates the exchange of information.
God Has Already Shared Himself With You Through Jesus
The Gospels are extraordinary works of literature. Despite the fact that they are not full biographies of Jesus of Nazareth, they provide us with an enthralling portrayal of the historical figure. If you attentively study those four testimonies, you will be able to deduce the mysteries of his heart. If you spend more time reading and studying the writings of and about the four apostles—Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John—you will gain a deeper understanding of Jesus, who is God revealed to us in flesh.
- Reading about Jesus curing people thousands of years ago helps you understand that our Living God is capable of reaching out from heaven and touching your life right now as well.
- Jesus opened up about his feelings.
- But the most important thing to consider is how you, personally, may make Jesus’ wisdom your own.
- What distinguishes the Bible from other texts is that it is a vehicle through which God communicates with individuals.
- The more your desire for a personal relationship with God, the more intimate that letter will be.
God Wants You to Share
When you are intimate with someone else, you put your faith in them to the point that you can tell them your secrets. God knows everything about you regardless of whether or not you want to tell him, but when you choose to share something that is deep within you, it shows that you have faith in him. Trust is difficult to come by. You’ve most likely been deceived by others, and when that happened, you may have vowed that you’d never open out again in the future. But it was Jesus who initially loved and trusted you.
Your confidence has been won as a result of his sacrifice.
It is painful to bring things up again and give them to Jesus, but it is the only way to grow in relationship with him.
There is no other option.
Taking the first step takes bravery, and it takes time. We can only overcome our worries with the help of the Holy Spirit, who will encourage us along the way.
Give it Time to Grow
You may not notice any difference in your relationship with Jesus at first, but over the course of several weeks and months, Bible texts will begin to take on new significance for you. The relationship will only become stronger. Life will make more sense if you take it in modest doses. After a while, you will have a sensation that Jesus is present, listening to your prayers, and responding to them via Scripture and inner promptings. An overwhelming sense of certainty will descend upon you, as though something magnificent is taking place.
He will provide you with all of the assistance you require in order to develop an intense and personal relationship with him.
Beyond Sharing to Enjoying
When two individuals are intimate with each other, they don’t need to say anything. Marriage and closest friendship are examples of how the joy of simply being together may be felt by husbands and wives. Even when they are alone, they can enjoy one other’s company. It may seem heretical that we should be able to enjoy Jesus, yet the ancient Westminster Catechism asserts that this is a necessary component of the meaning of our lives:
- Q. What is the ultimate goal of human beings? A. The ultimate goal of man is to honor God and to enjoy him eternally.
We praise God by loving and serving him, and we may do so more effectively if we have a personal connection with Jesus Christ, God’s only begotten Son. If you are an adopted part of this family, you have the right to enjoy your Father God and Savior, just like any other biological family member. You were created for a close relationship with God via Jesus Christ. It is your most essential calling right now and for the rest of your life.
Intimacy with God: What Does It Mean to Experience It?
For as long as I can remember, I’ve been addicted to receiving positive feedback and approval from others. When I’m not the center of attention, the top performer, or the most appreciated, I find it difficult to function. The fear of rejection and disappointment in the sight of others was and continues to be the driving force behind my actions. What is revealed is my inner insecurity, which is founded in my conviction that I am desirable only when I am “doing good.” The fact is that what I actually crave is the closeness that can only be found in God’s unchanging love.
We want to be cared for, recognized, understood, and loved for who we are, regardless of our circumstances.
This sort of intimacy begins with God, who is the source of all closeness.
If we can be intimate with God, however, he can and will show us how to be free to experience the type of closeness in relationships that we all yearn to have with one another.
I recall the first night I spent at my college dorm. It was a long night. There were so many various feelings flowing through me on the day of moving into my new home; I was eager, scared, and really joyful all at the same time. By that evening, I had come to the conclusion that I would have a group of new closest friends. But it was that night when reality set in. I was concerned that the individuals I was meeting would not be particularly fond of me. Maybe they weren’t the friends I wanted or the ones I was “supposed” to have, but they were still friends nevertheless.
- At that point, I felt completely alone.
- Intimacy with God is a unique experience.
- It essentially indicates that we are “never alone.” It indicates that we have achieved peace.
- That day is approaching when you will be scattered, and each of you will go your own ways, leaving me alone!
- And everything I’ve taught you has been done so that the peace that is in me will be in you, and that you will have a tremendous sense of security as you place your trust in me.
- With no regard for the circumstances or the people in his immediate vicinity, or for how they perceived or treated him, Jesus remained at peace and secure in his ability to triumph over his circumstances.
- (Free of dread and stress)
- Are you at peace with yourself
- Are you able to maintain your composure in the face of difficulties and tragedies
- Are you able to overcome the difficulties that life has thrown at you
In John 16:31-32, Jesus tells his followers, “Now you have finally come to believe.” In my quest for more intimacy with God, I’ve discovered four ideas that are essential to learning and experiencing greater closeness with God.
- God is interested in me
- I am able to be absolutely honest with God
- I am able to be vulnerable with God
- God gives me authority
- God empowers me.
In Part 1, we will look at the first two of these four keys to experiencing intimacy with God, with a particular emphasis on the feelings of love and security that we feel when we are in God’s presence.
God is interested in me
The first step toward having closeness with God is to believe that he is really interested in each of us. God is aware of our existence and want to be near to us. Apart from this, God is aware of our presence on the planet and the tasks he has assigned to us. He believes in us and is assisting us in having the influence that we are destined to have on the world. Lord, you are quite well-aware of my existence. You have the ability to read my heart like an open book, and you know exactly what I’m about to say before I ever begin to voice a word!
- Psalm 139:3-4 (KJV) You can see from this text that God is interested in you and your uniqueness as a person.
- He has the ability to complete your phrases.
- Since my inception, I’ve always had a support system surrounding me.
- We are aware of each other’s thoughts and are able to complete each other’s phrases.
- While participating in sports in high school, I recall this being shown to be true time and time again for us.
- Towards the conclusion of one specific game, a bench-clearing brawl erupted in the gymnasium of the opposing side.
- I was in a lot of difficulty.
Having a Closer Relationship With God He was the only one who came to my aid.
“That’s my brother!” he said as he plunged into the mob, waving his arms.
My brother and I have a complicated connection that is far from perfect.
The narrative depicts what I feel it looks like to have an intimate relationship with God.
Despite the fact that everyone else is going in the other direction of us, he is still interested and available to us.
You are not here simply to take up space or to function as a supporting role in someone else’s movie, as many people believe.
Consider the following: if you did not exist, nothing would be the same.
Every one of us is intertwined, and we are all influenced by the actions and even the presence of individuals in our immediate vicinity.
This type of insight and confidence can only be obtained via a personal relationship with God. The question becomes, though, whether we are sincerely interested in God after we have grasped this concept.
Am I interested in God?
“You are my witnesses, and you are my chosen slaves,” Yahweh declares. I picked you so that you would get closely acquainted with me, would always believe in me, and would completely comprehend that I am the one God. The existence of a god before me, and the existence of a god after me, cannot be established. TPT Isaiah 43:10 (Translation) To be interested in God, we must first understand who he is, then believe in him, and then be near to him in our hearts. Not out of self-interest, but because he understands that being with him is what is actually best for us at this point in our life, he wishes for it.
- Do I believe that God want for me to come to know him? (This includes knowing what he thinks and feels about me)
- Do I desire to know God
- Do I make daily efforts to comprehend God (his nature, his goodness, his purpose, and his love)
- Do I believe in God
- Do I believe in myself
I can be completely truthful with God
O Eternal One, put me on trial and investigate me thoroughly! You are welcome to search me thoroughly, from my innermost longings to every idea that passes through my head. 3 Your constant love is always in front of me, and I have traveled down Your path of righteousness. Voice in Psalm 26:2-3 Our ability to travel on God’s genuine path is made possible by his unchanging love. The use of deception and denial is a barrier to developing closeness. Even when the truth reveals sin and terrible feelings, we will be encouraged to be honest with God because we will be certain that we will still be loved even if we confess our sin and painful emotions.
Listed below are five beliefs and attitudes about God with which I have had to be honest on a consistent basis:
- God is unconcerned about your anxious thoughts. I’m on my own for the time being. It is all up to me. (Luke 10:38-42 New International Version) Doubting thoughts: God isn’t real. I’m forced to place my faith in other people or in money. (Matthew 14:26 New International Version) Bitter thoughts: God is unjust and frustrating. I have to discover my own sense of fulfillment. (Psalm 73:21-28, New International Version)
- Worrying thoughts: God is just too difficult. I have to take precautions to keep myself safe. I’m unable to live up to his expectations. In the New International Version of Matthew 25:24-27, the guilty thoughts are: God is going to punish me. I have to stay away from God. (Proverbs 28:1 New International Version)
Educate ourselves to view truth as a chance to advance in our wisdom and understanding of both God and ourselves. It is only when we are completely honest with God that he can teach us how to repent and conquer our most inner thoughts and feelings.
Am I truthful with God?
“And if anybody desires to be smart, he or she should ask God for wisdom, and he or she will receive it! He will not use your lack of insight as a chance to chastise you for your shortcomings, but he will use your failures as an opportunity to lavish his abundant mercy upon you.” TPT in James 1:5 In my case, the reason for my aversion to profound truth is that I wish to avoid ideas and sensations that are associated with traumatic previous events. These were the instances in which my interest was dismissed or denied.
- Are you confident enough in God to investigate your thoughts and discover your heart’s desires? Is it possible for me to be completely honest with God, myself, and others about my most intimate thoughts and feelings? What are the ideas that are the most difficult for you to communicate with God
- What is it that you find the most difficult to confess to God?
When we first realize how much God cares about us, and how much we care about him in return, we are more able to comprehend the protection and comfort we may experience when we are honest with him.
Devotionals in this series
- What Does It Mean to Have an Intimate Relationship with God? Part 1: What Does It Mean to Have an Intimate Relationship with God? Part 2 of the article
Intimacy with Christ
When the apostle Paul says, “That I may know him,” it accurately conveys the deepest longing of every faithful disciple of Christ: “That I may know him” (Philippians 3:10). “Knowing Christ,” in the Pauline meaning, is not the same as the type of mystical encounter that many people envision. Paul had no desire for any hidden understanding of Christ that was not given in the Scriptures. He was not requesting that Christ speak to him in private or that he get private messages from Christ. In truth, Paul’s quest for knowledge of Christ was everything from mystical in nature.
- Those who believe that intimacy with Christ entails some lofty degree of mystical, feelings-based communion with the Divine—as if it involves some understanding of God that goes beyond what Scripture has revealed—are gravely mistaken.
- It shares nothing in common with the real religion of Christ.
- How do we seek knowing Christ in the manner in which Paul saw it in Philippians 3:10?
- In the previous verses, he had already spent many paragraphs explaining his life before to Christ (Philippians 3:4-6).
- But then he proclaimed that, for the cause of Christ, he had renounced all of his spiritual advantages, including: “What things were gain to me, I considered losses for the sake of Christ.
- As a Pharisee, Paul had hoped to gain God’s favor by following the rules of the law.
- In order to avoid being judged, he threw away all of his own deeds of righteousness as though they were worthless scraps (cf.
This does not imply that he has stopped doing good deeds, but rather that he has stopped putting his faith in those deeds to bring about his salvation.
This is referred to as the doctrine of justification by faith.
Now Christ’s own righteousness has been credited to us, and we have received the full benefit of his work on our behalf.
Furthermore, because justification by faith implies that we are clothed in Christ’s righteousness, it fosters the most personal connection possible between the believer and his or her Lord.
That is why the apostle Paul frequently referred to Christians as individuals who are “in Christ.” To put it another way, trust is the foundation of any genuine contact with Christ.
As the apostle Peter reminds out, even though we have not seen Him, we love Him because of our confidence in Him (1 Peter 1:8).
Hosea 6:6 declares that “I delight in loyalty rather than sacrifice, and in the knowledge of God rather than burnt offerings,” and that “I rejoice in loyalty rather than sacrifice.” That verse implies that we should not think of worship as consisting solely of repetitive actions of religious ritual—such as sacrifices, burned offerings, and other ceremonies—as opposed to anything more meaningful.
- If we want God to be pleased with our worship, we must think about Him in the proper way.
- True knowledge of God, on the other hand, is being acquainted with Him as He is revealed in the Scriptures.
- True closeness with God is therefore predicated on having the right perspective about God.
- And, yet again, this does not imply that we should pursue some mystical understanding of God.
- Those who wish to know the genuine God in the true way must, as a result, attempt to get intimately acquainted with His written Word.
- Jesus Christ encouraged us to seek connection with God via private prayer, and we should follow his example.
- Moreover, Jesus himself emphasized the importance of private prayer: “when thou prayest, enter into thy closet, and when thou hast shut thy door, pray to thy Father who is in secret” (Matthew 6:6).
The teaching of Jesus did not imply that prayers should never be offered in public, for there are clearly occasions when Scripture urges us to join together in corporate prayer.
God, Himself, is the ultimate audience for all of our prayers.
The Intimacy of Submissiveness In response to the disciples’ question, Jesus responded, “Ye are my friends if ye do whatsoever I order you” (John 15:14).
Never, ever should anybody claim closeness with Christ if their lives are distinguished by disobedience rather than obedience to Him.
His Lordship over all is clearly declared in Scripture (Acts 10:36), and He is consequently right to require that we acknowledge and submit to His authority.
Once again, this pulls the issue of closeness with Christ out of the realm of the mystical and describes it in words that are quite practical in their application.
Of course, we can easily see why Paul desired a portion in the resurrected Christ’s power.
We can be assured that Paul did not have a twisted fascination with pain and suffering.
Through this encounter, Paul came to see that God’s mercy is sufficient to carry us through all of our difficulties.
People who are called to endure hardship receive an extra amount of God’s favor from the Almighty.
Rejoice and be very joyful, because great is your recompense in heaven, for they tormented the prophets who came before you, and so will they persecute you (Matthew 5:10-12).
True closeness with Him can only be achieved by those who are ready to bear what He experienced on their behalf.
It is important to note that these are not advanced talents for Christians in the second level.
Thus, the truth that intimacy with Christ is not a mystical secret is further reinforced. It is the entire purpose of our existence in Christ. Indeed, it is the ultimate goal for which we were created: to glorify God and to enjoy Him indefinitely and eternally.
Knowing God Intimately
Is it possible to get to know God as a friend on a personal level? If that’s the case, how do I go about developing this close relationship with Him? “I no longer refer to you as servants, since a servant has no understanding of what his master is doing; instead, I refer to you as friends, for everything I have learned from my Father I have made known to you.” 15:15 (John 15:15) When Jesus speaks of the coming shift in His connection with His disciples, he is referring to the coming change in their relationship with Him.
What exactly is a friend?
As friends, Jesus will treat His followers as if they were close friends with whom he will share everything He has learned from the Father.
What exactly are these hidden secrets?
What exactly is the God-mystery?
6:18-19) for all mankind, including Jews and Gentiles.
Saints from all over the world are now aware of this secret that had been kept concealed for decades and generations (Col.
That Gentiles would be reconciled to God as joint heirs with Jews and as members of the same body was a completely novel and unexpected development (Eph.
No one had anticipated the establishment of the church.
It was His Son, Jesus Christ, who died on the cross for our sins that was the first step (Eph.
revealing His deepest secrets to you.
In it, He exposes His personality and his ways of doing things.
What He holds dear and cherishes, as well as what He despises and despises.