How we view God greatly affects the way we approach Him, make decisions and live our lives. Without a deep and personal experience with Him, we end up responding and relating to Him based on what others say He is. Although there is a great value for this, nothing can replace personal encounters with God. Every encounter with God is a revelation of His nature and His intentions toward us. And these moments with God deeply transform us from within to without.
When we read about the different facets of God’s nature and identity we discover that a lot of them reveal that He is a Person and that He desires to engage with us on a PERSONAL level. He wants to relate to us not just as a corporate unit or body but as unique individuals. He knows us by name. Jeremiah wrote “Before you have formed me in my mother’s womb you knew me.” The word knew signifies intimate knowledge and experience. Meaning, long before we were conceived and born on this earth God had already known us and experienced us intimately. Before we ever had a knowledge and experience of Him He knew us deeply and personally. Before we learn to love Him He first loved us.
Yes He loves us because that’s who He is—GOD is LOVE. And LOVE is best expressed in relationship. And for Love to be powerful and real it must be personal. In fact one of the names of Jesus is Immanuel—God is with us. And He is also for us. Jesus calls us His Friend. He is our Father. The Holy Spirit is our Counselor. David calls Him my Shepherd, my Rock, my Shield, my Deliverer, my Tower, etc. In short, God must be PERSONAL to us in all aspects of life—career, ministry, finances, health, dreams, desires, and plans. He is a PERSONAL GOD. It is never His desire to be considered distant, disconnected and cold towards us. He is LOVE and His love is perfect. And the fullness of His amazing love is experienced in His Presence.
Great Men in the Bible
If we do a study of the mighty men in the Bible we see that their personal encounters and walk with God led them to do mighty for God. To name a few:
a. Moses encountered God in a burning bush. From a prince who was reduced to a shepherd, he became a deliverer of a nation.
b. Abraham encountered God and he became the friend of God. God blessed him and made a covenant with him and he became the father of many nations.
c. From a fearful farmer of a humble family, Gideon became the leader of a mighty army—a valiant warrior. The list is long.
The Heart of David
Of all the men and women mightily used by God, David gives us a deeper understanding of his personal relationship with God. His psalms are equivalent to our present-day journal entries or devotion. His personal communion with God written in a form of songs (which says a lot about his depth of passion and expression of that passion to God) are mixtures of intercession, yearnings, fear, anger, complaint, confusion, humility, brokenness, courage, dreams, devotion, despair or even depression.
Come to think of this: If somebody in the future happens to read your journal entries, what will they get? Will they be encouraged, empowered, guided or disempowered, confused and disillusioned?
But do you think you have the same or similar mood swings or internal struggles and tensions like David?
I would like to congratulate you. You are the perfect candidate to walk a personal walk with GOD. You are chosen to embark in this adventure. You are invited to this amazing journey of discovering Who God is to you and Who He will be through you.
And of all the Psalms of David, the one that captures Who God is to him is no other than Psalm 23.
Now, I want you to personalize this Psalm. Read it as if you wrote it. And make it personal to GOD. Talk to Him, and if you want, sing it to Him. But make sure you dig deep in your heart. Really mean it. Say it to Him as if He is in front of you. Let us go through it one verse at a time.
Let me give you an example: Instead of reading “The LORD is my Shepherd, I shall not want…” , you say to Him, “Lord, my Father, my Friend, You are my Shepherd—the One who guides me, loves, cares for me, knows me personally. I will lack nothing, I will always live in Your Presence, You will always be for me, I will live in abundance of Your love, provision, goodness and kindness…”
Being Personal with God
God longs to journey with us in this life. He desires a people who will see Him for Who He is—Friend, Father, Shepherd, Mighty God, Strong Tower… in the Present and the Future. Not to be distant but to be personal. Connected. Engaged.
Something happens when GOD becomes personal to us. We DISCOVER the beauty of what He has called us to be and to do. Because when God becomes PERSONAL to you, His promises becomes POWERFUL through you!
You are not an ordinary individual who is trying to make it through the day. You are the FRIEND of GOD. Through you He will reveal the secrets of the Father. Through you He will change the world.
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