By Kathi Pelton
It’s simple! As believers we often make the most simple things complex and convoluted— such as intimacy.
Did you know that intimacy with Jesus is that deep familiarity and shared affection that we have with those who we love to share our lives with the most? It is being together, talking together and even just resting quietly together.
So much of our Christian lives are surrounded by strategies, training, equipping and the thing that we need to do next. I am not suggesting that those things are bad, but I think we can wrongly take that mindset into the simplicity of intimacy and relationship with Jesus— often damaging true friendship and joy.
I once had a dear friend that was incredibly gifted in the prophetic. I worked closely with her but found it difficult to form a close relationship. We’d often meet for coffee and I would always begin our time with a hug and questions about her family, her personal life and her heart. She honestly had no desire to talk about those things and would give me short and shallow answers immediately followed by asking me, “What is the Spirit saying to you! What are you getting prophetically?”
I appreciated her desire to hear the Lord and to partner with what others were hearing but I wanted more than her gift and I wanted to give her more than my spiritual gift— I desired her friendship and a deeper connection of hearts.
I often wonder if God feels this way when we sit down to talk with him? Are we coming to get information or to nurture intimacy? I have been guilty many times of coming to “hear revelation” rather than to enter into the revelation of who he is while vulnerably revealing who I am. If this happens too often, he will stop me and say, “I just want to be with you.”
When I get together with my closest friends or my beautiful family— it isn’t with any agenda except to be together. I love their presence, I love the sound of their voices, I love to look into their eyes, I love to touch them and to enjoy them. It brings rest and refreshing to us and it brings great joy to my life.
Many believers need to practice and re-learn intimacy with God. They need to find him as their closest friend and just be with him. They need to have conversations that aren’t about the next assignment but about family, dreams, exciting news and even personal struggles. I even like to ask Jesus about his family— “How are your kids?” He’s happy to share out of friendship and deep intimacy even more than out of a need for more information.
If this is speaking to your heart and you realize that you’ve been relating to God from a place of “ministry partner” more than intimate friend, then maybe this is what he is saying to you today,
“I just want to be with you. I want to hear your voice, listen as you share your heart, I want us to look into each others face, I want to laugh with you, cry with you and share myself with you.”
There is always time for learning from him and hearing what he is doing…that may even naturally flow out of your sharing intimate time together. But don’t make it the reason you come to him every time. Make a place in your life where no agendas, except time together, exist. Let him ask you about personal things and take time to answer him. Just because he already knows all that is in your heart and on your mind doesn’t mean that he doesn’t want to spend time listening to you share it with him.
“Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.” Matthew 11:28-30
Come as a friend— you will find rest, comfort and joy in his presence.
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