Cultivating an Intimacy With God
The Privilege of Choice
Cultivating intimacy with God begins with PURPOSE. All believers are given the privilege of choice. You can choose to draw closer to the Lord, which is what God earnestly desires of you, or you can be casual in your relationship with Him, putting yourself in a vulnerable position to be a pawn in the hands of the enemy, which deeply saddens the Lord.
I Cor 2:9 But just as it is written, "Things that no eye has seen, or ear heard, or mind imagined, are the things God has prepared for tose who love him. God as revealed these to us by the Spirit. For the Spirit searches all things, even the deep things of God.
God is a jealous God (Ex 34:14), not wanting anything to take place over Him. The 1st commandment tells us to have no other gods before God Almighty, meaning He must have first place in our life over everything. The desire to grow in your intimacy with God is more caught than taught, and there is no amount of teaching that will make a difference if your heart is not at a place to desire what God has for you. You are missing out on adventures in the Holy Spirit that will take you to places where eye has not seen nor ear heard, or mind imagined what the Lord has prepared for you.
Believing you are reading this article says you are desiring to draw closer to the Lord and are PURPOSING to go even deeper in Him. You are simply looking for tools to achieve that desire. This article, and other articles on prayer is all about finding that secret place in God - your prayer closet where you and God regularly meet to grow more intimately together.
Man was Created to be Intimate with God
As we begin, let me briefly give you scriptural support to lay the foundation that God not only created us to have intimate fellowship with Him, but He wants us to have a growing, continuous intimacy with Him.
Adam walked with God before the fall: There was an intimate fellowship that Adam had with his Creator. Gen 3:8 tells us Adam walked in the garden in the cool of the day with God. This word "walk" or "walking" means open and transparent, intimacy, living in a state of innocence with his Creator, companionship, dialoging, mutual delight, joint decision-making, and exercising shared dominion over all of God’s creation. "Walking" was meant to be continual.
As the first created being, God created man with the intention of the enjoyment of a walking intimate fellowship with His creation. Adam, however, broke that fellowship by disobedience to God’s one command, and without realizing it, chose to be subject to the devil, the world, and the flesh. It didn’t change, however, that God still desires an intimate kind of relationship and fellowship with His created beings. That has never changed!
Enoch walked with God: Following the time of Adam, people began to call upon God, however, it wasn’t until Enoch (over 1000 years later) was anyone listed as having an intimacy with God (Gen 5:22-24). Enoch was the first man to uncover the true delight of walking, continually walking, and intimately communing with God, which Adam had enjoyed so briefly. Enoch pressed into God until he learned how to commune with his Creator in every facet of his life. He purposely determined to know God so deeply to where God and him were in constant fellowship. As a result, God took Enoch up to glory, meaning God raptured him to heaven to spend eternity with his God, continuing in that intimacy forevermore.
Noah found favor in the eyes of the Lord: (Gen 6:8) Noah was a righteous man, meaning he had right standing with God. Noah loved the Lord and was considered blameless before Him. He too had a walking, continual intimate relationship with his Creator. His lifestyle was listed in scripture as pure and holy. He and God walked together upon the earth. Because he had that kind of relationship with God, God used him to accomplish His purpose upon the earth. Noah and his family were spared from the end of the human race upon the earth, and as such, all people since the flood came from Noah and his family to make another human race of people upon the earth.
Moses was instructed by God: God instructed Moses on the mountaintop with His Decalogue (10 commandments). After that, Moses purposed to set up a special tent (or tabernacle) away from the camp of the people so he could spend time alone with God. This was his prayer closet – his secret place with God where no one could enter. A pillar of cloud came down and blocked the entrance so no one could come in while the glory of the Lord filled the tent and the Lord spoke with Moses face to face, just as a man speaks with a friend. Out of that intimacy, Moses wrote down everything God told him in what became known as the Book of Moses. Today, we see it as five books - from the Book of Genesis through the Book of Deuteronomy. Then God, in the giving of the Ten Commandments on tablets of stone, wanted His created being to love and obey Him. The first commandment that God gave was to "I am the Lord thy God - thou shall have no other gods before me." God was to be first in every aspect of our life. That is still God's desire for us today as well.
David knew God's presence: The psalmist David knew God's presence. It was tangible, even though he, nor any other Old Testament saint had the indwelling Holy Spirit within them. Yet, David knew how to enter into that secret place in God.
The writings of David in the Psalms encourages us how to draw closer to the Lord. The whole book is filled with worship and praise - a place where many worshippers go to to spend intimate time with the Lord.
The Prophet Isaiah loved the Lord intimately: The Prophet Isaiah also loved the Lord intimately - so much that God gave him a glimpse of heaven, in which he described in his writings. His God-given visions and dreams gave him more fervency in his worship to the Lord.
The Prophet Jeremiah sought after the Lord: The Prophet Jeremiah sought after the Lord with His whole heart. He wrote in Jer 29:12-13 When you search for Me, You will find Me; if you seek Me with all your heart… Jeremiah spent his whole life seeking after the things of the Lord.
Jesus spend a lot of time with His Father: Jesus is our example. He regularly went off alone to be with His Father. His favorite spot was up in the hills away from the crowds. Through the writings of His apostles, it becomes very clear Jesus spent a lot of time alone with His Father. He was continually seeking God for wisdom and direction as He spend long hours at a time with His Father in worship and praise. Jesus' intimate fellowship with His Father also came forth as 'Jesus spoke words of command' through the writings of His apostles on how we are to develop our intimacy with the Lord.
In Matt 22:37 & Mark 12:30 And you shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength; this is the first commandment.
Luke 4:8 Worship the Lord your God and serve Him only
John 4:24 God is spirit, and those who worship Him must worship in spirit and truth.
Rev 14:7 Worship Him who made heaven and earth…
The Apostle Paul had an intimacy with the Lord: We know that the Apostle Paul had an intimate relationship and fellowship with the Lord. He went away to Arabia for three years to spend quality intimate time getting to know Jesus through the power of the Holy Spirit. There he received much of what we know of today as the epistles of Paul. His life was devoted to spending intimate time with the Lord. He truly is our example on how to worship the Lord.
The Apostle John saw heaven open: The Apostle John, while in deep prayer, saw heaven open, and from that, he wrote the Book of Revelation. His life was a life devoted to intimacy with the Lord in prayer.
Our intimacy with God
It was out of that intimate relationship and fellowship that each of these men of God had with the Lord that led them to follow the plans and purposes for their life and make a difference in this world. It is no different for us today. Deep within our hearts, God has provided a meeting place where He desires to commune with us. That is how He created us. In that meeting place, God created within us the ability to seek after Him - to take pleasure in receiving His love and in turn pour out our love back to Him. Once we discover that meeting place, God will cause that desire to turn into a greater passion to spend more intimate time alone with Him.
How then do we cultivate that kind of intimacy with God? We must first understand that it is personal and private away from the interference of others, so that we can be real with God. That is key!
It begins by making a decision to spend time alone with Him in prayer. We come with one agenda - to love and adore Him. It's not a time to pray for others, or even your needs, but to just love on God. As your intimacy grows, you can count on God showing Himself more and more to you. As such, your intimacy with the Lord becomes an adventure with the Holy Spirit as you pour out your hearts to the Lord and He pours out His love to you.
Dreams and Visions
Often believers will have dreams and visions of the things of God. The key here is to never seek after the dreams or visions, because if you do, you will get them, but they will NOT be from God. Seek after God, and when God wants to show you something, He will give you dreams or visions. And...when you get them, you will know for certain they are from God. You never have to wonder if it was you or God. When it is from God, you will know! God will show you every detail, and that vision or dream will never be forgotten.
God has a purpose for giving you a dream or vision. When you get one, it will have such an impact on you to where it will stay with you always. As needed, the Holy Spirit will remind you of that particular dream or vision over and over because they are generally not for one time, but it is God's wisdom pouring down on you to guide and direct you in life.
Acts 2:17 And it shall come to pass in the last days says God, that I will pour out of My Spirit on all flesh; Your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, your young men shall see visions, your old men shall dream dreams.
God so deeply desires you to know Him intimately, yet so few Christians actually purpose to meet God in this kind of intimate way. Are we too busy, or can’t find the time out of our day to be alone with Him? Or, simply put, do we want to run life on our terms - remaining carnal – fleshly – to be like everyone else, resulting in putting God in the background of our life? You see, we all have that head knowledge of what God wants, but is our heart willing to obey?
Everyone has their priorities on what is important in their life. Decide today to make your intimate prayer time with the Lord a priority in your daily life.
My prayer is that you will earnestly desire to seek God with your whole heart to develop a more intimate relationship with the Lord....don't delay - begin today!
Holy Spirit Adventures
Out of the intimacy we spend with the Lord, getting to know Him, is when God plants His plans and purposes within you to make a difference in this world. When that happens, new adventures in the Holy Spirit will come and you will look forward to every time you spend with God. It will be a fulfilled appointment with Him each time as you seek to know Him in a greater and more deeper way.
Developing an intimate fellowship with the Lord is more caught than taught. It comes out of a hungry heart wanting to draw closer to the Lord.