Helpful books have been written on the subject of knowing God. True believers, like Paul, usually have a real desire to know God better. The one certain thing is that God really does desire us to know Him intimately and permanently. The Bible makes it clear that knowing about God is quite different to knowing Him. Knowledge is in the head and intimacy is in the heart.
True knowledge of God is given by the Holy Spirit who alone is able to pinpoint the blockages that stand in the way of closeness and intimacy with God.
Knowing God involves knowing His attributes, his character and His ways so that we know Him for who He is, not simply for the self-centred belief that He is there for me. Trust is the basis for a true relationship with God, shorn of ulterior motives. He is to be loved and obeyed for Himself, not for what I can get out of it. I am saved for His glory not for my own gratification.
I suggest that there are three foundational keys which need to be turned in our hearts for intimacy with God. Firstly, Jesus must be crowned as Lord. He is indeed Lord, Lord over all, over heaven and earth and there is no-one before Him. One day every knee will bow and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord. However, if I am to know intimacy with God Jesus must be Lord over all in my life. It is futile to say that He is Lord of certain areas and not Lord of other areas. There is no middle ground for the Christian: Jesus must be Lord of all, or He can`t be Lord at all.
The second key that must be turned in my heart is the key of forgiving others. The resentment and bitterness of harboured un-forgiveness stands in the way of intimacy with God. Forgiveness for many is a journey but the first step on the journey is to make the choice to forgive; the Holy Spirit will then give us the emotion and assurance to know we have forgiven however costly that may be, as we journey with Him. There is no such thing as blanket forgiveness; we must face the hard issues for which we are forgiving a person.
The third key is the key of self-acceptance. Self-rejection is one of the main barriers to knowing the Father’s love. It focuses inwards, dwells on negativity and generates a self-centred morbid type of Christianity; not the robust, simple life of a child of God. God accepts us as we are but loves us far too much to leave us as we are. He begins a work of grace within us, opening the eyes of our heart to see more of Him and less of me. Thus my heart is open to receive the fullness of His love and I love Him and love others in a new way.
Prayer: Thank You heavenly Father that through Jesus You have made the way for me to know You intimately and personally. Thank You for the cross and its power at work in my life today. I choose today to put Jesus on the throne of my heart, to give Him first place and to die to self and selfishness. Please open the eyes of my heart that I may know You better and live for Your glory. Amen.
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