I like acronyms. They help me remember things. DO IT is a short acronym to help with 4 key concepts related to honoring God.
D - Desire
O - Obedience
I - Intimacy
Intimacy with God is an elusive goal for many people. The idea of having a relationship with an all-powerful God that you cannot see, touch, or hear is just too much for a large part of the population. Even those of us who completely believe in and trust God for salvation through Jesus, sometimes find it hard to maintain an intimate relationship with God.
There is no doubt about it, true intimacy is hard in all relationships. It requires a lot of work. But it is well worth it. Once you begin to experience real intimacy with God you will enjoy joy and peace like never before. Here are some keys to a more intimate relationship with God.
Spending time with God leads to intimacy.
“Blessed is the man who does not walk in the counsel of the wicked or stand in the way of sinners or sit in the seat of mockers. 2 But his delight is in the law of the LORD, and on his law he meditates day and night.” Psalm 1:1-2 NIV
These 2 verses indicate a man is blessed when he chooses to spend time meditating on God’s law (The Bible) instead of spending time with the wicked and sinners. More than just spending some time, verse 2 says “meditating day and night” is “his delight.”
If you want long-lasting intimacy with God you must spend a lot of time reading and meditating on His word found in the Bible. It’s true you might enjoy moments of intimacy in other activities like worship services, singing worshipful songs, Bible study group, prayer meeting, etc. But, I don’t think you will experience enduring intimacy without devoting yourself to reading and studying the Bible.
Psalm 103 is another passage that shares some keys to intimacy with God. This Psalm focuses on the many wonderful and amazing things God has done and continues to do for us. This Psalm points to another, important part of intimacy with God--it’s a two-way street. We do our part and God does His part. Psalm 103 is filled with examples of God doing His part. Here is a small sample--5 verses of the 22 verses in Psalm 103 (NIV).
“Praise the LORD, O my soul, and forget not all his benefits— 3 who forgives all your sins and heals all your diseases, 4 who redeems your life from the pit and crowns you with love and compassion, 5 who satisfies your desires with good things so that your youth is renewed like the eagle's. 6 The LORD works righteousness and justice for all the oppressed.” Psalm 103:2-6
There are times, all we need to do is receive the great blessings God provides. Psalm 103 shares many examples of this. Sometimes we must put forth great effort. Reading and studying the Bible is the key to understanding true intimacy with God. I encourage you to establish a plan for reading the Bible on a daily basis with the goal of reading the entire Bible at least one time per year. There are many daily reading Bibles available. Here is a post about the one I am using currently Read Through the Bible.
In the Sermon on the Mount, Jesus shares another key to intimacy with God.
“Blessed are the pure in heart, for they will see God.” Matthew 5:8 NIV
If you approach God with a sincere desire for intimacy you will achieve intimacy with God. God knows what is in our heart. He knows whether our desires are pure or not. God desires intimacy with us.
Paul shares another truth about intimacy with God--experiencing what Jesus experienced will lead us to a deeper level of intimacy.
“I want to know Christ and the power of his resurrection and the fellowship of sharing in his sufferings, becoming like him in his death, and so, somehow, to attain to the resurrection from the dead.” Philippians 3:10-11 NIV
Paul understood the importance of an intimate relationship with God. In this verse, from Philippians, he shares some things that grow out of intimacy with Jesus. He connects intimate knowledge with the power of resurrection and “the fellowship of sharing in his sufferings” which will eventually lead to death, and then, resurrection from the dead. Sometimes intimacy with God might lead to suffering but it will always lead to joy and peace and eventually resurrection.
The last passage I want to share is from Psalm 51. David wrote this Psalm after he committed adultery with Bathsheba and sent her husband to his death in the heat of battle. Let’s take a look at what he says:
“Have mercy on me, O God, according to your unfailing love; according to your great compassion blot out my transgressions.” Psalms 51:1 NIV
To his credit, David humbled himself and asked for mercy as soon as he realized his sin. David continues to confess his sinfulness throughout the first 10 verses.
To have intimacy with God we must have a humble attitude and confess our sinfulness.
“Do not cast me from your presence or take your Holy Spirit from me. 12 Restore to me the joy of your salvation and grant me a willing spirit, to sustain me.” Psalm 51:11-12 NIV
The second half of this Psalm (verses 11-19) is devoted to David’s desire for continued intimacy with God. David understood that sin separates us from God. We are human and we sin, that is a fact. We must follow David’s example and confess our sins to continue intimacy with God. Also, like David, we must truly desire to maintain our intimacy with God.
You honor God by seeking a more intimate relationship with God.
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