Many of us read the word “intimacy” and get embarrassed. But intimacy is not always about sex. The word is defined as: closeness, togetherness, rapport, attachment, familiarity, friendliness, friendship, affection, warmth, confidence. So, when I talk about intimacy with God, I am talking about coming closer to Him – knowing Him, sharing life with Him.
So many of us hold God “at arm’s length.” I suppose there are plenty of reasons why we do that. Some of us may be afraid that if we come closer to God, we will be exposed. Yes. That is a part of intimacy, too. But, you have to understand, we are talking about GOD here! He already knows all your business, and He chooses to love you in spite of it.
Often I observe the behavior of Christians, and I am amazed that they do some of the things they do. One conclusion I have come to about this is that they lack that closeness with God which would change how they act. How much do they honestly love Him?
I know in many ways, you and I am free to act any old way we please. We are adults. We have a free will. We can make our own choices, right? Ah, yes, but my Lord has bound me to Him with cords of love. We are so close that anything I do or say, or even THINK is laid bare before Him. Knowing how much He loves me should influence the way I act. Knowing the price that was paid so I could have this sweet intimacy with Him helps me to make choices that I know will please Him. If there was no relationship, it would be different.
If some stranger on the street came up to me and said I was a big jerk, I doubt it would bother me much. They don’t know me. We have no connection. What they think is not my concern. I don’t live to please them. It is easy to brush off their words. But, if someone I care about –someone I love – tells me I am a big jerk... well! That is a different story. Love changes everything.
Yes. Love. Amazing love. Perfect love.
Sometimes I hear Christians say that they feel God wants them to do this thing or that thing, but THEY JUST CAN’T. Hmmmm. Why? Could it be because they just don’t love Him enough? Could it be that there are other things in life that are more important to them than their relationship with God? Do they choose fear over Him? Do they choose the opinions of others over Him? Do they choose a comfortable, easy life? Does their pride come first?
Lest you think I am some kind of “holier than thou” type, I have said no to God a time or two. But, the terrible feeling that weighs my heart down is not worth it. Usually, after a bit of struggle, I find myself running to Him and asking forgiveness and for another chance to obey.
If you truly love someone, and they ask you to do something, no matter how hard it is, you will try to find a way. You will do everything in your power to grant the request of this one you love. Say, for instance, one of your children becomes ill and needs a kidney transplant, you would PRAY you were a match! Or, suppose your dearest friend is in a desperate situation and needs help. You will try your best to be there for them, right? You LOVE them.
OK, so if you, as a believer who loves God, is asked by Him to do something – something hard and a little bit scary– will you do it? Will you step out and trust Him? Will you make excuses, or will you take a deep breath and say, “Yes, Lord”? I believe this is the true test of our love for Him.
(1Jn 4:7-8 NLT) Dear friends, let us continue to love one another, for love comes from God. Anyone who loves is a child of God and knows God. But anyone who does not love does not know God, for God is love.