Monday, January 7, 2013

Once Again Getting to Know Him

Somedays I wish the sermons at my church were deeper, more like the seminary lectures we got at our last church.  Somedays I wish the worship would draw me in more and give me goosebumps at the power of the God I worship.  Sometimes that happens, but more often I'm just trying to figure out the tune to yet another new song.

But one thing I have learned in my 30 odd years as a Christian, my pastor and church are not responsible for my spiritual growth.  God is and He always has something to teach me and tell me.  I just have to show up.

So when my pastor talks about being "All-in" for Christ I ignore his advice to join the church, be baptized, and start serving in a ministry.  Those things I can already cross off.  Instead I ask God, what would show You that this year I am "All-on."

It didn't surprise me when the answer was "spend time with Me, sit at My feet and listen and learn.  I have things for you this year, ways for you to grow and become more like Me, but it can only happen if you know me."

It didn't surprise me because while last year was about the awesome reassurance that God knows me, every little piece of me, and still loves me enough to send His son, the last few months He has been reminding me that I've been coasting on my knowledge of Him.

No one would say, "oh, it is okay that I never see my husband now or spend time talking with him.  We spent all our time together when were dating and that first year or so of marriage.  We know each other and so everything is good."  Time is important in any relationship; especially our relationship with God.    

And the easiest, clearest way to get to know God?  Read His word where He pours out His heart and personality for me to know Him.

So for the last few months I have been sporadically following a reading plan and using the SOAP method of daily devotions.  SOAP stands for Study, Observation, Application, and Prayer.  The reading plan I am following has me read a long chunk of scripture, several chapters at least, then choose a short passage from it that stands out.  Then take that smaller passage, spend time in observing it (ie make a list about what it says or asking who, what, why ?'s), then ask God how can this apply to me and my life, then pray for His help to actually accomplish whatever goal His word gave you...including the thanking Him, praising Him, and just basking in His presence.

But it is a new year and sporadically isn't enough.  I don't believe in making New Year Resolutions because I figure if I need a resolution to get myself to do it, I won't actually do it for long, but this year is the year I am going to make it through the entire Bible again.  Something I haven't accomplished since before kids.  I'm not going to succeed because of some commitment I've made that will trail way.

No.  I'll do it because I need Jesus.  I need Him to fill the empty places in my heart, to light up the dark regions, and to transform me.  I need this to protect my marriage and my family and so I start to radiate Jesus in all that I do.  Then I won't need to badger my friends and family into going to church and reading their Bible.  They will see Jesus and want greater intimacy with Him because of seeing Him in me.  They desire His presence for themselves.

In the interest of full disclosure, I am currently on track with this year's reading plan though I did read Friday and Saturday's chapters on Sunday.  I really should have read on may have helped me with my grumps.  So okay.  I am fully committed and yet likely to fail at times.  I am so thankful for God's grace.  Now I can go read my Jordan novel.  The dishes can wait, but Jesus shouldn't have to.

1 comment:

Sarah said...

I love this!!!! This is so good. And I love how you said that the first thing He taught you was the awesome reassurance that God knows you, and still loves you. I think that has to be the base..otherwise time with Him is just an obligation....instead of a deep intimate relationship. :)

Have fun spending time at His feet, my friend!

Blahhhh....I'm still signed is as Sarah. It's me.... -Mer