As a child I was privileged to grow up in a church that believed in the importance of systematic Bible teaching. This meant that an inescapable aspect of life was attending catechism classes. Truth be told, I experienced these times as frightfully boring. However, it did expose me to foundational truths at an early age. Most people from similar backgrounds will probably remember the following Question and Answer from their catechism. Q. ‘What is the chief end of man?’ A. ‘Man’s chief end is to glorify God and enjoy Him forever’.
Usually Christians readily assert that glorifying God and loving Him by obeying Him is of supreme importance (John 15:8-10). But what about the ‘enjoying Him forever’ aspect? We may easily forget that this is also considered an important part of the ‘chief end of man’.
As parents my wife and I find it important that our kids obey us. It is only right. However, we find it just as important that we carve out time for us to simply be together, just to spend some quality family time. We may play games, go for a walk or even sit on the couch and watch telly. The main purpose of these times is to simply enjoy being together. As parents we treasure family time and we know that it inputs precious nurture into the lives of our children.
If this kind of input wasn’t part of your upbringing you might find it difficult to grasp that God enjoys being in relationship with us. Yet even if you have had good family times you may realise how much God would like you to enjoy being in relationship with Him. It’s true that we need to obey Him and yes, at times we will have to face difficult things as Christians. But in all of it we are meant to relish the fact that we are God’s kids and that He is our God!
I don’t think that the ‘enjoying God’ part of our lives is meant to be some other-worldly, super-spiritual experience. It is mainly in the everyday life- when we go to the store, when we cook, or when we go to work that we can enjoy doing these things not only for God, but also with God. And then, at other times, we can draw aside, take our Bibles and enjoy reading God’s Word together with Him.
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