How much do you truly trust God? How much do you really believe what He says? Many look at the Bible and think it’s just a book of rules. Without realizing it, even Christians can have that attitude towards God’s Word and toward God. There’s danger for us, as believers, in thinking of the Bible as a book of rules and Christianity as a system of regulations to follow instead of realizing it’s about relationship. It’s then that we become judges of each other instead of those who are known to be followers of Christ by their love for one another. We become condemners to a lost and dying world instead of hope givers. We don’t see what we are missing out on. Because we don’t see it ourselves, we can’t help others see that God’s Word is not about a bunch of rules and regulations. It’s about an intimate love relationship with the Creator who made you. When we realize that the Bible is God’s love letter to us and we begin to have that intimate love relationship with the Father, we are so humbled by the magnitude of His love for us even in our imperfections that we want to extend that same love to others and His love begins to pour out through us.
The theme of relationship, of God wanting fellowship with us has existed from the beginning, going all the way back to Genesis. God created Adam and Eve for fellowship with Him and He was saddened when that fellowship was broken when they chose to trust and believe the lies of the enemy instead of the Truth of the One who made them. God so greatly wanted this love relationship with His creation that He had a plan of redemption in place that would lead to His Son, Jesus, coming to live on earth, dying for our sins, and then rising again showing His power over sin and death. Knowing Adam and Eve would sin, God still created them. Knowing that we would each mess up, God still chose to create us. He has loved us from the very beginning and has wanted a love relationship with us from the start.
Maybe you’ve never come to know the Lord as Savior because it appeared to you to be about rules rather than relationship. One of satan’s great deceptions is that all the Bible is is a set of rules to follow or standards to live by. Following that line of reasoning, if that’s all it is, rules and expectations that I can never meet anyway, what’s the point? Where’s the joy in that? But the Bible is far from that. It’s the Living Word of God. Through the Holy Spirit, the Word of God comes alive and shows us that it’s a love story between the Creator and His creation. And He wants that love relationship with YOU.
Maybe you’ve made the decision to follow Christ, but it still feels like it’s about following rules to you, and not about knowing your Savior in a close relationship. Maybe you have this idea that it’s just about keeping yourself in line and God must be angry when you fail to do so. Maybe you think God must get irritated with you for asking so often for His help, how tired He must be that you continue to need His help. Maybe you are a a Christian, but you haven’t felt like God really cares about YOU and really wants that intimacy with YOU. Maybe you’ve been raised in church and you know all the “right” things to do—you have a quiet time, you go to church, you help others—but it all feels empty because you’re only doing it because it’s what you are supposed to do, not because you’re in a love relationship with the One who loves you unconditionally. You go about your spiritual routine without ever really expecting God to speak to you.
All those thoughts and feelings are lies and deceptions of the enemy to keep you from the kind of loving, Holy Spirit powered relationship with God that he knows will give you victory over him. God has so much more than that for you. God has fullness of life that He wants to give you through an intimate love relationship with Him. Maybe there are Truths in God’s Word that you didn’t even know where there because you haven’t delved into His Word to get to know Him. Maybe there are Truths from His Word that you do know exist, but you haven’t taken Him at His Word and you’re not living like His Word is Truth.
I know because I’ve been there myself. And He has faithfully worked on removing those lies to where I could see the Truth of His Word—that He loves ME, that He wants that relationship with ME, and that by His power, I can live a life of faith that glorifies Him. He’s shown me that He wants to be my Help, that He wants me to depend on Him, that He’s not angry when I keep coming to Him for help. He wants me to do that. He wants me to trust Him, to turn to Him. He’s shown me that He will supply the “want to” or the desire to follow Him. He’s shown me that His Word is TRUTH and that He means what He says, that I can trust Him to do what He says He will do.
That kind of relationship where you KNOW God loves you and trust God wholly and love Him with all your heart, mind, and soul, the kind of relationship where you take God at His Word and believe and stand on His promises to you—that’s the kind of relationship that enables believers to walk through hard things, engage in difficult battles, and face tough struggles and yet still have a joy down deep and a peace that passes all understanding. It’s why a man like Horatio Spafford can write a hymn like It Is Well after facing financial difficulties and losing all five of his children. Because he had a relationship with His Heavenly Father, one such that He knew His father was with him in the midst of such grief. A relationship where the difficult things that happen in life only make the relationship stronger because He proves Himself in each and every one of your trials—that He loves you, that He’s right there with you, and that He will keep every promise He has made.
If you feel like you’re floundering in your walk with Christ, ask Him for help. Ask the Lord to lift the blinders and reveal the lies that have been keeping you from having that intimate walk with Him. Ask Him for the desire to spend time with Him. Ask Him to help you take Him at His Word. Ask Him to help you know and love Him intimately rather than as some far off god who doesn’t really care about you. He wants you to know Him. He wants that intimate relationship even more than you do. Cry out to Him for it and He will answer. As believers, we have the gift of the Holy Spirit living in us, to help us want God and the ways of God. He will give you a desire and a hunger for Him, for His Word, to spend time with Him, a trust that He will speak to YOU personally. He’s waiting today to have that closeness with you, that love relationship, that kind of relationship where you trust and depend on Him and where He meets your every need with His sufficient grace.