I am sharing the most vital and indispensable path of my faith, which if I would not have walked upon would determined whether I would have been alive today or just existed like the walking dead. I am talking about pursuing an intimate walk with Jesus. Faith for me hinges on a word which for many is a pretty far and distant thought but is the fulcrum of what I want talk about today- INTIMACY WITH GOD.
I think it is my duty to inform you, that being disciple of Jesus is not easy and definitely not a painless walk at all (when has learning to die to yourself daily been easy?). Yet full of satisfaction and peace knowing even though you are crossing the valley of shadow of death you are headed towards the right direction!!)
Here are some very important lessons i have learnt during my personal walk with God and reflecting on my pursuit to Godly INtimacy and on HIS unfailing faithfulness towards me.
This is the precursor of every healthy sustainable relationship to attain intimacy. Unless you really desire to walk intimately with Jesus, there is no way you will pursue it. After all, has not our Creator created us to be people of passion and love. Anything we are passionate about we run after it like our life depends on it !! It is incorrectly said a lot of times that we are naturally selfish. I beg to differ, as i think people have this innate and this wonderful capacity to love unconditionally and pursue the object of their affection even though it rejects or refuses to reciprocate. I want to tell you that when you pursue Jesus you can have the surety and confidence of finding HIM because HE wants to be found by you, yes “you” (Jeremiah 29:13).
2.TRUTH OR REFERENCE POINT
This aspect of my walk pushes me to look for the truth,
- The truth about who really God is.
- What are HIS ways, what are not HIS ways
- His clear perspective over a specific situation,
- who you are to HIM and who you are not and so on.
Lord is so extravagantly good and desiring of us that HE accepts us they way we are, adopts us as HIS legal heir without changing anything in us!! In the middle of all of this we cannot negate that though God loves us unconditionally, we do carry mindsets, baggage, lies, hurts, disappointment, fear and a lot of stuff that keep us from fully experiencing the love of our Father. Do not be afraid because God completely understands, is aware of and can clearly see all this even before we remotely come into the awareness of them in us. I learnt that in order to deny lies I need to recognize them, and I cannot recognize the lie until I pursue the truth (John 8:32).
I want to give an example here, I grew up in a home with thin emotional support where words like anxiety, depression, feeling lost, grieving were banned. In my parents’ defense, they were not really depriving me of something but they did not consider this to be an important need because I was just a kid. So, automatically I learnt that I do not need help during emotionally messed up days! I needed to act like I am fine and carry on. Did that stop God from loving me? Nope, but it did make me stop myself from running towards HIM, especially when I was anxious, hurting or grieving. I had to lay down my understanding of relationship and accept HIS. I had to humble myself and pray my way (1 Peter 5:6) into this new way of life (2 Corinthians 5:17) where He is closest to me when I am hurting (Psalm 27:10; Psalm 34:18).
This is the toughest part to learn in our relationship with the Lord. Not because HE is hard on us but because it is easier to pretend than accept our weaknesses and shortcomings We use big words like merciful, gracious, savior, forever loving for HIM but we do not want to accept that these words are only useful if we accept that we can and do run short.
Grace and mercy are not required if you are perfect. God saved us so that we can run to HIM on our bad days even if we caused those bad days instead of running away from HIM (Hebrews:4:15-16). Do you take off your clothes of pretense and come to HIM naked? Greatest honour you can ever give to Jesus is to let HIM see your worst part, the part that does deserve to be rejected knowing Jesus won’t reject it but will take it and make it new. Do you trust God enough to bring your heart to HIM instead of just praising HIM with your lips (Isaiah 29:13)? And please give me a break if you are thinking that I am asking you to bring your love to HIM when I say heart. No, bring your deceit, bring your anger, bring your hurts, bring your weaknesses, bring your hatred, bring your wickedness, bring your sin, bring your unfaithfulness, bring your fears, bring your mistrust and you will receive grace and love because HE did not come for the perfect but for the sick (Mark 2:17). Stop singing – HE came for the sick and think that you are not sick . Yes, Jesus came for the wicked but am I wicked? No, I am godly. Just shut up!! Seriously, take off your clothes of self-righteousness because JESUS has already covered us with HIS righteousness (Isaiah 61:10). Accept it as a lifetime journey and you are not damaged but highly favoured because you have been chosen to be confirmed into the image of Christ.
4.Ask and Pursue
What are you asking from God today? I am not against asking God for things and the generous King HE is , HIS hand is always open to fulfilling our natural needs but a lot of people in this world have it all and yet they commit suicide or spend half their lives in depression.This proves, things can never fully satisfy us. In the middle of all your seen needs do not forget that you need to ask Him for a greater understanding of Jesus, and yourself in HIM. Ask God to help you see you the way HE sees you or whatever that makes you more like Jesus the SON in your respective season. I am so thankful to Mr. Luke for recording the most important aspect of the ask, seek and knock deal which I do not know why Mr.Matthew did not.So yeah, Luke right after telling us to try asking and so on, quoted Jesus with this – “You fathers—if your children ask for a fish, do you give them a snake instead? Or if they ask for an egg, do you give them a scorpion? Of course not! So if you sinful people know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to those who ask him.” Jesus clarified that the Holy Spirit is the real good gift and that HE wants you to keep that on the top of your asking, seeking and knocking list. For it is the Holy Spirit that will guide us into all truth and the truth will set us free (Luke 11:9-11; John 16:13).
5.Courage and Belief
God calls me to be courageous and I was so stuck because I wanted to understand what does it really mean to be courageous (Joshua 1:9) mean we have been taught courageous means brave, ability to stand against danger and fear right? Well, I wanted to be courageous for Jesus but did not know how? Do I build up a church? Start a ministry? Put myself in difficult situations to test my courage? I was so confused. After searching earnestly, I finally found the definition I was looking for, being courageous means – “Being able to walk according to your beliefs despite of fear and difficulties” and belief means – “accepting something as truth without any visible proofs.” So, I found a new mission for my life to fulfill everyday – “walking according to what I have accepted as truth despite of fear etc.” I knew I had to believe I am forgiven and cut off from the past despite of the guilt that attacked me. I knew that I was called to be courageous on the days I felt like I had squandered so many years of my life without Jesus, believing that HE is able to use it for a greater good (why? because HE says so). It is a choice we need to make everyday until it renews our mind and creates in us the new way of living compared to the usual way of living. Some seasons He teaches us to be bold because of who we are and in some HE teaches us to be meek despite of who we are. To be courageous and to work on our beliefs is worth it !! And yes, guess what when we decide to repent (change our mind) God himself supplies us with courage (Isaiah 57:15).
God’s grace has been given to us for so many things but more than anything else it has been given to us to draw closer to HIM and letting HIM renew us into the image of HIS son. USE GRACE WELL !!
This post was first published here on the author’s blog.