I may say I have a ‘walk with God,’ yet if I’m not exposing each thought, intent and motive–if I’m not holding up everything to the light of his judgment, I’m ‘walking in darkness.’
I don’t know about you, but I do a lot of grumbling and resisting when things don’t go smoothly. See, believing the sovereignty of God acknowledges every incident that comes my way is from him.
Jesus told his disciples, ‘You are those who have stood by me in my trials.’ Friendship with Christ is sharing the ‘fellowship of his sufferings,’ that is to me all the stuff I undergo. ‘That I may know him, and the power of his resurrection.’
Friendship with God believes that ‘he has come in the flesh,’ my flesh. It’s a marriage of spirit and flesh. ‘Beloved, now are we the sons of God!’
Jesus Christ is the way to a personal relationship with God. He did what he did to make us fit for relationship with a holy God. ‘Be ye holy, for I am holy.’ Being holy intends to be holy.
God’s spirit in me makes me holy. ‘The power of the Highest shall overshadow you.’ Christ opened the way for God to dwell with us. ‘Prepare ye the way of the Lord, make his paths straight.’
My heart is an empty wilderness. ‘For the Lord’s portion is his people. He found him in a desert land, and in the waste, howling wilderness.’ Has he found you yet?
Who knows best, God or me? ‘For it’s God who works in me both to will and to do of his good pleasure.’ Despite my lifelong common sense, an all-knowing God knows best. ‘Do I not fill heaven and earth? saith the Lord.’
Jesus Christ ‘learned obedience by the things which he suffered.’ God’s great desire is that I know him, and experience is the best teacher. ‘Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me.’
Perpetual private prayer is personal relationship with God. Prayer defers to him that he knows the way (and I don’t). God is developing his character in me via the people, places and things in my path. ‘Thy will be done in earth, as in heaven.’
The bible asserts that God speaks nonstop. His creation does not sit still. “Let there be light, and there was light.” The light is on, always.
“Now the LORD had said unto Abram,” is present tense–what he says is eternal. He’s relentlessly speaking. Our environment is a perpetual echo of God’s voice.
“Jesus Christ is come in the flesh,” is an intimate God stooping to us. He came into the natural world to bring us into him and him into us. He gave his life to give his life.
A newborn begins to experience environment only after he’s born. Same with a personal relationship with God. “You must be born again.” Do you hear him?
To leave God out of one inkling of my life is idolatry; he’s a jealous God. The good news is, He IS my life. (Gal2:20)
Christ desires personal relationship at every turn. Every turn, via his life in me. ‘Deep calling unto deep.’ His Spirit cries, “Abba, Father.”
I must practice relationship-with-God, more than anything. (John5:40)
More than loving one another, more than bible reading, more than devotions, more than prayer. Thoughts and interests and motives wide open to him. (1Jn1:7)
God doesn’t bring this to pass overnight–he reveals himself in little obediences. He dearly wants, may I say demands, 100% inclusion. Even when I screw up.
‘Our God is a consuming fire,’ means that anything not of God is completely consumed. Sounds distant and angry, and underlines the ‘great gulf fixed between us.’ God is holy and men are not. ‘You shall be holy, for I the Lord your God am holy.’ Jesus Christ came to make men holy, by giving men HIS holiness.
God wants personal relationship. ‘And the Lord said unto so-and-so;’ count the number of times! ‘My sheep hear my voice.’ For the most part we ignore or scorn his voice. The solution? ‘I will make a new covenant.. I will put my law within you and write it in your heart.. I will put my spirit in you.’
Wait, ‘No man puts new wine into old bottles,’ how can this be?! ‘The heart is deceitful, desperately wicked!’ Yet, God wants me to be holy, to have fellowship with him?! ‘Behold the Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world.’ And so Christ gave his life — to give his life. ‘If any man thirst, let him come to me and drink.’
When I started out on my walk with God 8 years ago, I knew I was home to stay. His house is full of people I love, where I feel safe. Where I can pour out my heart anytime, about anything. ‘I have set the LORD always before me — because he is at my right hand, I shall not be moved.’ Though I’m not exactly sure what that means, I’m sure of him. It’s of him, I’m sure.
Walking with God is merging with him through everyday situations and people. It takes lots of practice. ‘Behold, the kingdom of God is within you.’ He doesn’t give out all the answers — he becomes the answer. If I walk in the light of Christ he and I share all those situations and people together. The natural merges with the divine. ‘Jesus Christ is come in the flesh.’
Jesus Christ claimed to be the light of the world. ‘Why call me good? only God is good.’ He certainly stood out among the commoners, and the high muckety-mucks too. They knew, and his disciples knew he was of God. Still, he was a commoner.
What is, ‘Walk in the light, as he is in the light?’ It’s exposing my every thought, intent and motive — good, bad or ugly — to him. It’s forming the habit to conciously share the stuff of life with him. ‘Jesus Christ is come in the flesh.’ He’s that common.
There’s a gruesome, parable-like event in the book of Judges that alarms me to always, ‘walk in the light.’ Chapter 19 highlights God’s people walking in darkness: ‘There was no king in Israel.. every man did what was right in his own eyes.’ Every man employed his own knowledge of good and evil.
I consciously fear God; I fear taking one step without him! ‘For we wrestle against powers, against rulers of darkness, against spiritual wickedness.’ Doing without Christ for even a moment invites apostasy to my front door. ‘This I say then, Walk in the Spirit.’
‘Now as the men were making merry, behold, the men of the city, certain sons of Belial, beset the house round about, and beat at the door.’ Likewise today, ‘that old serpent which is the Devil’ seeks audience with the children of God. ‘Be sober, be vigilant of your adversary the devil.. whom resist steadfast in the faith.’
Jesus Christ said, ‘I am the way, the truth, and the life.’ That’s a unique statement that he made to his disciples as they wallowed in amazement, confusion and sadness. They knew he was leaving and couldn’t come to grips with their future without him.
Jesus’s earthly ministry was commonplace drudgery and everyday miraculous. He was to be, ‘Immanuel, God with us,’ and is still, ‘God with us.’ He came to ‘work the works of God.. that we do greater works than these.’ Is Jesus Christ come in your flesh? Are you the power of God?