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“Everyone who confesses that Jesus is God’s Son participates continuously in an intimate relationship with God. We know it so well, we’ve embraced it heart and soul, this love that comes from God. God is love. When we take up permanent residence in a life of love, we live in God and God lives in us. This way, love has the run of the house, becomes at home and mature in us….”
(1 John 4:15-17 MSG)

Many of us have, at one point or the other in our lives, asked ourselves this question: “How can I develop a deeper intimacy with God?”

A few weeks ago, a charge on Spiritual Maturity was shared on the DIW Telegram group and some parts of the message stuck with me.
“intensely crave the pure spiritual milk of God’s word”
“craving has to be backed up with action”
“we refuse to graduate when we become dull in hearing, when we relegate the Holy Spirit to the backbench of our lives.”
“we’ve been believers for 20 years but spiritually, we are 6 months old”.
The last one hit me hard. I pictured a 20-year-old girl staring into a mirror and seeing a 6 months old baby. Not an endearing sight, I must say.

I believe it is safe to say that all believers desire to have an intimate relationship with God. However, what sets apart the few from the multitude is not the mere desire alone, but desire backed with action.

It is not enough to moan and sigh deeply each day saying:
“God, I really want an intimate relationship with you. I crave it. I have very good intentions but lack the willpower to carry it through. Why do I find it so hard to do this? What am I doing wrong and how can I make it better?”
God hears this, shakes his head sadly and says: “You find it difficult because you are not yet my Lover!”
You may wonder – How can God say that when that is all I want to be? I serve him in various capacities in church, I read my bible in the morning and pray at night, I attend all church services and I even pay my tithe and offerings!

What does it mean to be God’s lover?
Have you ever been in love? I’m sure most of us have. You will agree with me that you always wanted to be in the presence of your beloved. You talked about everything – no matter how insignificant. You shared your dreams, visions, fears and goals with your beloved. You were in a state of constant communication.
Now, replace your beloved with God for a moment.
Can you say without a doubt that you communicate as frequently with God as you do with your beloved? Do you find it exciting studying his Word or meditating on them? Do you countdown throughout the day to your special hangout time with God? Do you talk to him throughout the day and share ALL with him – both the mundane and important things? When do you tell him about your worries? Is it when you are overwhelmed and have tried to resolve them on your own, or do you carry him along every step of the way? Do you compartmentalize God or do you give him free rein into every sphere of your life?

Today, take an inventory of how you spent your time over the past week. How much of it did you spend watching movies, funny videos, gisting with friends, surfing the internet, reading the latest gossip on Instablog? How much time did you spend on Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, WhatsApp et al? Netflix, anyone?

One of the most important tools for building healthy relationships is said to be “Effective Communication”. Communication is a two-way street which involves how we send messages and how we receive messages. Most of us have no problem with sending messages to God, our issue is receiving messages from Him because we do not know how to listen.

God wants to speak to us! He has heard enough of our own voice and it would be a welcome change to be heard too. If we truly seek an intimate relationship with God – if we intensely crave it, we will back up our cravings with action.

“… And don’t for a minute let this Book of the Revelation be out of mind. Ponder and meditate on it day and night, making sure you practice everything written in it. Then you’ll get where you’re going; then you’ll succeed” (Joshua 1:8) [emphasis mine]

The best medium through which God can speak to us is through His Word! The Word is His Voice. It is God’s love letter to mankind. Toss aside the idea that when God is speaking to you, you must get goosebumps or the words will practically jump off the pages of the Bible. God speaks to us through his Word and he invites us to find him through His Word. As we seek him, our minds are quietly transformed and we become more and more like God.

So, is God your lover? Put your money where your mouth is. Act today. Commit to spending quality time with God. Take a break from the noise around you. Put that phone down. Instead of reaching for your phone first thing in the morning, reach for your bible! Talk to God all through your day – don’t leave him out! Give Him a chance to talk back – Listen. Participate continuously in the intimate relationship with God that began when you gave your life to Him.

To conclude, Romans 8: 38-39 tells us that nothing can separate us from the love of Christ. Jesus loves us therefore “…I’m absolutely convinced that nothing – nothing living or dead, angelic or demonic, today or tomorrow, high or low, thinkable or unthinkable- absolutely nothing can get between us and God’s love because of the way that Jesus our Master has embraced us.”

Writer – Tomilola Adebiyi

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