Hindrance to Intimacy with God

Most of us who claim to be followers of Christ would affirm that we desire intimacy with God.  We practice disciplines we believe help us grow in our closeness with the Heavenly Father.  We pray, we read the Bible, we attend church, we even participate in small groups.  Some of us go to conferences and seminars to seek ways to grow closer to God.  Still, for many of us, that goal of knowing God in a more personal and genuinely experiential manner seems elusive and difficult to achieve.  What could make it so difficult to have intimacy with the God who has loved us so much He gave His Only Begotten Son for us so we could be in relationship with Him?

I recently ran across a statement in a daily devotional provided by Dr. Charles Stanley which said, “Animosity toward another person and intimacy with God cannot coexist in the same heart”.  Suddenly, it seemed so obvious to me that having intimacy with God while at the same time having animosity or hatred or bitterness in our spirit is like trying to merge two completely opposite passions.  God, by His very nature, is love (1 John 4:8).  To know Him intimately is to engage in connecting with His nature (love).  When I harbor feelings contrary to love within me, I have formed a barrier between my inner being and my Heavenly Father.  His love is so amazing He has demonstrated its measure when He gave His Son as a sacrifice for our sins while we were still enemies against God!  When God is so loving and goes to such great lengths to demonstrate His love, how can I expect to draw intimately close to Him without taking on His loving nature?

Reflecting on Dr. Stanley’s comment “nimosity toward another person and intimacy with God cannot coexist in the same heart”, I have come to realize that the intimacy I desire with God may not be as far away as I once believed.  Maybe all I need to do is simply allow God to mold me into a more loving person so that my nature no longer opposes His but joins with His loving character.  What about you?  Are thoughts of animosity, anger, bitterness and the like keeping you from the close, personal relationship with God you really desire?  Let’s seek God’s help in becoming more like Christ – loving one another as He loved us!

~ by brotherfaron on May 13, 2017.

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