“Religion is a very dangerous thing. By that I mean being so caught up in rules and regulations and not focusing on the thing that matters most- a personal relationship with God.” – Joyce Meyer
If you have been a Christian for any length of time, you attend church, pray and read the Bible because that is what Christians do. You learn about God, you love God, but how much of a personal relationship do you have with Him. Because when you have a conversation with people who have an intimate, personal relationship with God, you realize there is something more, a deeper level to our relationship with God. We were created to have a relationship, a friendship with God, but to have that, we have to put our trust in Him.
We do not put our trust in the relationship we have developed with Jesus – our trust is in Jesus Himself. We trust in Christ alone. We bring nothing to the table, even if we’ve been a Christian for decades. If our personal relationship with Christ “develops,” it’s not so much that we develop it, but that it develops in us by the Spirit as we put our trust daily in Christ alone – that is, as we continue to trust that Christ will be faithful to us, even though “all our righteous acts are like filthy rags.” (Isaiah 64:6 NIV)
God doesn’t want to be the almighty powerful God that is far removed from our lives. He wants to be your friend, that one that is always close to you and will never let you down. God wants you to experience all that He has for you, He wants you to know His will for your life. A personal relationship with God is just like a relationship with your spouse. When you first met your spouse you learned where they live and their phone number. You may have shared some same interests. You may have some friends in common. Or you went to the same college. You had brief chats but you realized something was missing. What’s missing is that you’ve never had a deep conversation with him or her. Nor have you heard any stories about them, or seen them happy or sad. You don’t know their likes or pet peeves or any of the little quirks that define them. All of that takes time, listening and getting to really know him or her.
It’s the same way with knowing God. 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 the more you work at it.
- What does not mean to have a personal relationship with God?
- What can we do this week to make our relationship with God deeper?