“His purpose was for the nations to seek after God and perhaps feel their way toward him and find him—though he is not far from any one of us.” – Acts 17:27.
Have you ever found yourself starving for real intimacy with God? The idea of intimacy is difficult to get your arms around. How can I be intimate with someone I can’t see, hear, or touch? God and I can’t text with each other or meet for lunch. Yet we know that God created us for an intimate relationship with Him. But what does that mean and more importantly what does it look like in real life? There is no standard formula for developing an intimate relationship with God. Yet there are things we can do to invite the Lord to draw near to us. Jeremiah 29:13 says, “You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart.”
Intimacy with God means God is not a priority; He is the priority. David wrote in Psalm 27:4: “One thing I ask of the LORD, this only do I seek: that I may dwell in the house of the LORD all the days of my life, to gaze on the beauty of the LORD and to seek him in his temple,” Paul stated his priority by saying everything in my life is garbage compared to knowing Jesus (see Philippians 3:8).
There is a story in Luke 7 about a Pharisee named Simon and a sinful woman. Simon invited Jesus to have dinner with him. An immoral woman from the city heard that Jesus was there and brought a beautiful alabaster jar filled with expensive perfume. Verse 38 says, “Then she knelt behind him at his feet, weeping. Her tears fell on his feet, and she wiped them off with her hair. Then she kept kissing his feet and putting perfume on them.” Simon was in the same room with Jesus. He sat at the same table. But because he was wrapped up in his piety and good works he completely missed the heart of Jesus.
But the sinful woman did not. She fell at His feet, no act of devotion was too big for her; overwhelmed with love and affection, she worshiped Him with all she had: her most precious perfume and her hair. And Jesus accepted her devotion. When to it comes to a relationship with Jesus we want to be the sinful woman, but sometimes we end up being more like Simon by spending all our energy trying to do great things for God instead of worshiping Him and developing a real intimacy with our Savior. Intimacy means we, like the sinful woman, want more of Jesus, in our life.
There will be times in our lives when we have a real hunger and a desperation for God. There will be times when we just can’t get enough of Him. There will be times when we feel His presence in tangible ways. At times like these God will feel close and there will be the intimacy we seek. But real intimacy means we do those things even during times of trial or when bad things just keep popping up and it is a labor of love to pray, to spend time in the word and to serve. But always, I want to seek him. The deepest growth in intimacy in my personal walk with God began when I want to seek to worship and serve God regardless of the circumstances.
Augustine said, “To fall in love with God is the greatest of all romances; To seek Him, the greatest adventure; To find Him, the greatest human achievement.”
- What keeps you from having a more intimate relationship with God?
- What role does fear play in developing an intimate relationship with God?
- How can we improve our relationship with God?