“My old self has been crucified with Christ. It is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me. So I live in this earthly body by trusting in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me.” – Galatians 2:20.
It has been said that true Christianity is not a religion but a relationship. But how intimate of a relationship do you think God desires with each one of us? If you really think about it, God has done and is doing His part to have an intimate relationship with us. God desires an intimate relationship with each one of us.
Do you know God? I don’t mean do you know “of” God. I mean, do you have an authentic personal relationship with the One who created you, and with His Son, Jesus Christ? It’s not a question of whether you go to church every week or if you grew up in a home where God was talked about frequently. Honestly, that doesn’t guarantee that you actually know God at all. I’m talking about a relationship with God based on a relationship with Jesus, thanks to His sacrifice and not based on the good or bad things you’ve done. Have you experienced God’s great love for you? “May you experience the love of Christ, though it is too great to understand fully. Then you will be made complete with all the fullness of life and power that comes from God.” (Ephesians 3:19) And as a result of that love have you chosen to surrender your life to His plans and His ways.
If you want to develop a personal relationship with God, start by praying and reading His word consistently. Talk to God everywhere. This is the most important way to grow your relationship with Him because practically, no relationship would thrive without intentional communication. Quiet time praying and studying the Bible may not always be exciting but it’s so worth it.
Then listen to God’s voice. Talking to God is important, But listening to Him is just as important. It’s not enough to just listen, we should act in obedience when He speaks. Obeying God has a lot to do with trusting Him. It’s tough to have a personal relationship with someone you don’t trust. God is trustworthy. You can trust Him with your whole heart and soul and be confident that He won’t ever let you down. You can tell Him when you feel angry, or when you feel afraid; you can trust Him when you’ve sinned or fallen short, and be confident that He won’t turn you away. You can tell Him your deepest, darkest secrets and the hidden struggles you’d never want anyone else to know about. Tell God whatever you feel inside. He’s God – He’s not offended by the thoughts in your heart. Let Him help you process them.
Finally, learn how to depend on God for everything. Depending on God is crucial for developing a strong relationship with Him.
Developing a relationship with God is a process. It won’t happen all at once and sometimes you’ll think your relationship with Him is strong one day and the next day you may wonder if He’s even there. But, that’s a part of the journey. Like any relationship, a relationship with God is complex. You’ll learn more about Him and encounter Him in deeper ways in each season.
- How would you rate your relationship with Jesus? What criteria do you use to rate the relationship?
- What can you do this week to make the relationship even stronger?