I was living in Los Angeles, California when I picked up the phone, while standing outside my apartment in the hot dry sun. It was my mom, asking if I had “heard the news?” I said, “what news?” My mom then detailed how the pastor that I had grown up with was being accused of paying a male prostitute for sex and doing drugs. My jaw hit the floor. What? No, this couldn’t be. It was a couple years prior that my parents had felt led to leave that church, but that was the church I had spent my middle school and high school years in. The church that my walk with God had flourished in. I felt confused and angry, how could this be?
This was a pivotal moment for me. A moment that I often look back on in my journey with God. I really looked up to this man. I had spent countless hours under his teaching. I had seen God move when he preached. I respected him and adhered to his counsel.
I hear story after story from those that have been hurt by the church. Accounts from Christians that have been let down or scarred in some way by others who have called themselves “Christians.”
It was in this moment that I made a decision that has impacted my walk with Jesus ever since. I chose to cling to my own personal relationship with Jesus. No one could take this from me. No one. No pastor that I looked up to, no preacher that I admired. No one.
I had too many encounters, too many talks, too many miracles, too many in the presence of HIM moments, and too many alone with God conversations to throw the towel in for someone that got caught up in the world’s entrapments. No, I ran to the one that never had let me down -Jesus.
It is a walk with Jesus. A relationship with Jesus. Highs, lows, ups and down.
In Matthew 7:19-20, Jesus talks about bearing fruit. “Every tree that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire. Thus you will recognize them by their fruits.”
He then goes on to talk about a relationship with Him.
“Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but the one who does the will of my Father who is in heaven. On that day many will say to me, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name, and cast out demons in your name, and do many mighty works in your name?’ And then will I declare to them, ‘I never knew you; depart from me, you workers of lawlessness.’
What does it mean to know someone?
I know my Husband.
I know his voice.
I know his temperament.
I know when he is irritated.
I know when he is happy.
I know when he is not feeling well.
I know him.
How do I know him so well?
Well, I have spent a ton of time with him.
That is our walk with God.
Spending time with Him.
I love having a quiet time with God. But my time with Him doesn’t end when the quiet time ends.
God wants to be in all the moments throughout the day.
In 1 Kings 17, we see incredible intimacy between Elijah and God. Elijah had previous prayed for provision for a widow and her son who were starving to death and God provided. But, later the widow’s son gets so sick that the Bible says “there was no breath left in him.” No breath in him -to me — means that he was dead. Then, Elijah cries out to God: “O LORD my God, I pray thee, let this child’s soul come into him again. And the LORD heard the voice of Elijah; and the soul of the child came into him again, and he revived.”
This part gets me: “And the LORD heard the voice of Elijah.”
God heard Elijah’s voice. The only way you know someone’s voice, anyone’s voice- is by spending time with them.
God KNEW Elijah’s voice.
He KNEW it.
We are living in wild times.
Right is wrong and wrong is right.
Marriage is under attack.
Gender is under attack.
Christianity is under attack.
The Family is under attack.
The media is constantly manipulating reality.
The Truth IS UNDER ATTACK.
Amid the storm, in the midst of the chaos, it is easy to get whipped up in the frenzy.
We are told in Psalm 46:10 to “Be still and know that I am God.”
Be still but also KNOW. Know that HE is God.
In that stillness, sit with God. Talk with Him. Spend time with Him. Begin to know His voice and have Him know your voice. When you KNOW, there is a confidence and a peace within you that passes all understanding.
Intimacy is formed in time spent together. He wants to know you.
He will lead.
He will guide.
He will direct.
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