How is God Personal?

This post is a challenge for each follower of Jesus. Are you able to see God in your life and describe that relationship as real, personal and/or practical. Don’t gloss over the question. If you say YES, then HOW is the relationship that way?

The answer is imperative because God’s plan for the advancement of his kingdom depends on his relationship to his people. Here is a sample of a few passages where God is real, personal and/or practical:

  1. Genesis 3:20-21 – Adam and Eve were able to walk with God in the Garden, and after they sinned, they hid themselves; and God provided animal skin coverings for them. (real, personal and practical).
  2. Genesis 16:1-13 – Hagar ran away from her abusive master Sarai. When all hope was gone, she discovers that God came to her, he sees her, knew her needs and provided for her. (real, personal and practical).
  3. 1 Kings 3:5-13, 4:29-30 – Solomon was told by God that he could ask for anything he wanted from God… and he asks for wisdom to better lead God’s people. God likes that answer so much he gave him fame and wealth, too. (real, personal and practical).
  4. Mark 6:7-13 – The disciples had Jesus in their midst, he had called them to be with him and then sent them out to preach. He gives them authority and guidance. (real, personal and practical).
  5. Acts 12:1-17 – Peter is in prison and the angel visits him, and the doors are opened. His release is an answer to prayer. (real, personal and practical).

The penetrating question is HOW is your relationship with God also real, personal and practical? For me…

  1. I sense that as I read the Bible and hear messages on Sunday, God opens my eyes, mind, heart and soul to what he wants to say to me (Matthew 22:37-38, 1 Corinthians 2:14-16, John 14:26).
  2. In times of prayer I have received guidance, instruction, encouragement as I pour my heart out to him (Psalm 62:8, Lamentations 2:19, Psalm 23:3, 73:24, John 14:26, 16:13).
  3. I believe that he has given me the power to speak to others about him, to witness, share my faith and encourage others along life’s journey (Matthew 28:19-20, Romans 15:5, 1 Thessalonians 5:11, Hebrews 3:13).
  4. I am aware of his constant presence (Hebrews 13:3, Nehemiah 9:31, Psalm 94:14, 2 Corinthians 4:8-10).
  5. How about just the fact that God has a purpose for my life, and a wonderful plan? (Psalm 139:16, Acts 1:8).

Sometimes we look at God, and believe that he will come to our aid in our time of trouble. But that is sort of opposite of how it works. God is always at work in the world and invites us to relate to him so he can accomplish his work through his people.

Let me repeat what I wrote above: God’s plan for the advancement of his kingdom depends on his relationship to his people. So he MUST work through us in ways that are real, personal and practice. The salvation of the world is at stake!

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How to Hear from God

In January 2011 we will have a special emphasis on hearing from God. It is a critical that we understand this concept. How in the world can we know God’s will and do God’s will if we cannot hear God’s call? Volunteerism begins with a calling of God, not with the needs of people (or the church). If people serve only because we have a need, burnout or boredom will follow closely behind. However, if we serve or volunteer because we have heard a word from God, or we have a passion for that type of service, we will have much greater success in our work. Sometimes the calling of God is the only thing that keeps missionaries on the field; same for regular volunteers in church ministries.

Let’s take a quick look at Noah who built the ark in faith.the Bible says that “He obeyed God, who warned him about things that had never happened before…” (Hebrews 11:7). How did he believe these things that had never happened before would actually happen? Faith, of course, but I believe there’s more.

Noah believed because he could hear God. So, how do we do that? By listening of course. Perhaps you might want to trust God, but you don’t hear him. Here’s the key – to hear God you have to get near God.

  1. You don’t hear God when the TV is on.
  2. You don’t hear God when you are listening to your iPod.
  3. You don’t hear God when you are listening to the radio.
  4. You don’t hear God when your mind is filled with a thousand other distractions.
  5. You’ve got to get alone with God and be quiet.

The Bible says, “Be still and know that I am God” (Psalm 46:10). That means we need to solitude and just be quiet with your Bible, and then ask God if there is anything He wants to say to you. This is a quiet time where you can read God’s Word and talk to him about what’s on your heart.

The Bible has a term for this “being with God,” it is called, “walking with God.” Noah walked in close fellowship with God, so if you want to hear God, you’ve got to walk with him. That’s the aim of discipleship; that we walk with God, and develop a closer relationship with Him every day.

Isn’t it time to begin hearing from God and stepping out in faith? Sometimes we are afraid to step out in faith, or to get involved in a certain ministry. But what is the result of walking with God? You fear nothing. Why? Because when God is near, you lose your fear (2 Timothy 1:7).

  1. If you are fearful about getting involved in a ministry with children or preschoolers, you are not walking with the Lord.
  2. If you are fearful about leading a small group, you are not walking with the Lord.
  3. If you are fearful about your future, you are not walking with the Lord.
  4. If you are fearful about your finances, you are not walking with the Lord.
  5. If you are fearful about your marriage, you are not walking with the Lord.

Because the more your life is filled with the power and love of God, the less fear you have in your life. Love and fear don’t operate in the same heart at the same time.

Listen for the voice of God to speak to your soul, and then allow God to move you into action. There are places of service throughout King’s Grant Baptist Church; could God be directing you to take the lead?

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