On Saturday, I’ll be doing a new retreat–First Things First: Creating Intimacy with God Despite a Busy Life. I’m excited about it.
Spiritual intimacy with Him has to be pursued. No matter how busy or less-busy you are.
“”Martha, Martha,’ the Lord answered, ‘you are worried and upset about many things, but only one thing is needed. Mary has chosen what is better, and it will not be taken from her.'” Luke 10:41-42, NIV
Do you live like Martha, but long to be like Mary?
The last portion of “Balance, Busyness and Not Doing It All” focuses on the importance of pursuing intimacy with God. An intimate relationship with God is the only thing that balances stress, whether it’s busyness induced or the bad news induced, like we received this weekend.
An intimate relationship with the Father is essential in moments when the unexpected happens and devastation comes to your world. It’s the only thing which sustains you.
Intimacy with God, like other relationships, doesn’t just happen. It has to be intentional.
How can you be intentional about creating a deeper spiritual intimacy with God? Here are 4 principles from the upcoming retreat:
1. Remove barriers of unconfessed sin. Sin separates us from a deeper relationship with God. Do you ever feel God is far away, or that your prayers don’t rise to His throne? God doesn’t move farther away from us–He’s always with His children. We move farther away from Him when unconfessed sin builds up and it stands in the way of Him fully working in our lives.
“If we confess our sins, He is faithful to forgive our sins and cleanse us from all unrighteousness.” I John 1:9
Confession on a consistent, daily basis keeps the lines of communication open in your relationship with Christ, similar with other intimate relationships.
2. Create and protect time with God. Just like other important relationships, time together is essential. Appointments need to protected. Don’t give God your leftover time, because it’ll never be there.
Look at your weekly schedule. Create 3-4 times a week where you can spend non-rushed time with God through Bible reading and prayer. Schedule it and protect it.
It might be before work or during naptime with the kids. It might 2-3 times a week before bedtime, or the last half hour before kids come home from school. Whatever you do, make it work for you and protect it.
3. Turn things off. Turn off the radio in the car, the TV as background noise, and social media notifications as a habit. Intimacy with God also happens while you go about your day, but your mind needs free attention to hear God, to talk with Him, and to let His perspective invade your thoughts. The enemy wants nothing more than to bombard your mental space with distractions.
4. Obey. As you cultivate an ear to hear God’s voice, you’ll hear the Holy Spirit speak to your conscious about things in your life. It might be something He wants to change, a response He wants you to give, or an act of kindness He’s prompting you to do. Faith is dormant when we neglect to walk it out. Intimacy with your Savior increases when you obey in faith because you see His faithfulness and how He works in situations where you’ve yielded to Him.
In any relationship, intimacy just doesn’t happen. Deep relationships require intentional prioritization. Take steps today for a more intimate relationship with your Savior.
Father, thank you that you are waiting for us to come to you. Thank you for coming closer to us as we come closer to you. Speak to each person who desires a closer relationship with you. Amen.