Last week I was visiting with my friend Barb Raveling in her podcast and we were talking about my experience leaving Africa, settling down in the US and what God has been teaching me. (Click here for the interview)
I told Barb how I sometimes I struggle to help others understand God and deepen their spiritual walk.
And how, when I took that challenge to God, I felt like He said
“You can’t teach others how to be intimate with me (in the sense I thought I could). I am the only one who can teach people to be intimate with me”
It’s not that I can’t encourage, share tips & principles that point in the direction of God and stronger marriages.
I can, should and I do.
But what I can’t do, is do for people what only they can do for themselves.
Cultivate an intimate personal relationship with God.
1 Corinthians 2:9-10
“But as it is written: “Eye has not seen, nor ear heard, Nor have entered into the heart of man the things which God has prepared for those who love Him.” But God has revealed them to us through His Spirit. For the Spirit searches all things, yes, the deep things of God.”
God is personal, intimate and unique to each of us.
Only His Spirit, who knows the heart of God can reveal the deep secret things of God to you as an individual.
Someone else cannot do that on your behalf.
“But the Helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in My name, He will teach you all things, and bring to your remembrance all things that I said to you.”
Pursuing God for yourself and your marriage
It’s important, as you read this blog and other helpful material, to always remember God is our only hope.
That we put our hope on Him, not on principles and tips.
They are all great, tips and encouragement, and God will use them to encourage us.
But they are not a replacement for actual relationship.
We need to be digging into His Word, spending time with Him in prayer and worship.
Marriage is something God helps us to do. It’s not something we do by ourselves.
And so if we neglect our relationship with God, we’ll struggle to have that extraordinary marriage we desire.
So today I want to encourage you, that if you don’t have a personal relationship with Jesus Christ, or if you have slackened and fallen away, please get back with God.
“Here I am! I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will come in and eat with that person, and they with me.”
If you feel like your walk with God is dry and “average”, don’t settle for that dry mediocre place.
Press in for more.
Proverbs 8: 17
“I love those who love me, and those who seek me find me.”
A few things to keep in mind as you pursue a passionate relationship with God.
1. Quantity (of time) is important, but never use it as an excuse not spend time with God every day.
Maybe you can’t spend an hour in worship and the Word, but you can curve out ten minutes.
Because if you don’t start now, you can’t grow.
2. Your time with the Lord feels “dry”
Your mind wanders, you don’t know what to say, you are burdened with many things.
Put on some worship music. Intentionally turn your heart towards God and ask Him to help you connect.
It’s interesting how we learn to ask God for everything else but the ability to connect and fellowship with Him.
John 5:14 ESV says
“And this is the confidence that we have toward him, that if we ask anything according to his will he hears us.”
3. Make it a discipline.
Don’t wait to feel like spending time with God to spend time with God. (Click to tweet that, Thanks).
Make it a discipline. That same discipline that gets you out of bed and finds you seated at your work desk by 8am? That.
Emotions follow intentional actions and discipline eventually yields results.
4. Cultivate passion and zeal.
In his book “When Sinners say I do” Dave Harvey asks
“What is zeal? Zeal is a desire on steroids. An average football fan sits in the stands and cheers, but a zealous one will sit shirtless in subfreezing weather with his body painted in team colors.
Zeal is people who get up a 5am on Black Friday to stand in the dark to score a bargain. Zeal is a deep desire that defines how we live and reveals what we love“
I am the dancing-shouting-clapping type of person. Not saying everybody’s got to be like that (though it’d be nice to have some company, lol!)
But allow some of that life within you to ooze out and infect your outside – your worship, your life, the way you carry yourself e.t.c
If God has been good to you, it’s okay to let it show!
5. Stay obedient
“Come close to God, and God will come close to you. Wash your hands, you sinners; purify your hearts, for your loyalty is divided between God and the world.”
You can’t have intimacy with God and keep all your other things.
Intimacy grows when two people agree on some things. In this case you agree with God and you cut off the sin He convicts you about.
If you need prayer, have questions, you can email me. I am not a theologian or a pastor 🙂 but we can talk and encourage one another. Use my contact form here. If you a subscriber, just reply to this email, your mail will come to me directly.
Question; How do you cultivate your relationship with God? How has that impacted your marriage? Let’s share and chat in Comments
Ps. Remember to catch up with me and Barb Raveling as we talk about moving countries and the grace of God! Click over to her website and take a listen. Click here.