The government knows me as a number, 9 digits are my identity! Myriad companies know me as an account. Multiple databases exist to store information about my purchasing patterns, my income, my political affiliations, and more. It amuses me when I get a letter created by a computer that attempts to convince me that Global Company, Inc. knows me personally. And it frightens me a little when I see advertisements appear in my email or on my Facebook page that really are tailored to my interests because it shows me that computers are tracking me! But, I really do like personalized service. It feels good to sense that someone (the doctor, a waiter, the mechanic) has taken an interest in me.
Do you know Who knows me best? God, the Almighty One! When I pray, I am interacting with a Person. I believe that God is here, near, and interested in me! The Bible, where God reveals Himself, is rich with personal language about Him: God loves, God provides, God is our Father. Most people acknowledge the existence of God but, for many, God is not He. It is a distant Force or a remote Figure- unknowable. Even many who attend Christian churches recite an orthodox creed, go through accepted rituals, and live by a moral code all while having no sense that God is Personal and Present.
Jesus Christ left His place in Heaven, became fully Man, (the mystery of the Incarnation) to show us the face of God. When the disciples were fearful, He told them: “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me. If you really knew me, you would know my Father as well. From now on, you do know him and have seen him.” Philip said, “Lord, show us the Father and that will be enough for us.” Jesus answered: “Don’t you know me, Philip, even after I have been among you such a long time? Anyone who has seen me has seen the Father. How can you say, ‘Show us the Father’? Don’t you believe that I am in the Father, and that the Father is in me? The words I say to you are not just my own. Rather, it is the Father, living in me, who is doing his work. Believe me when I say that I am in the Father and the Father is in me; or at least believe on the evidence of the miracles themselves.” (John 14:5-11, NIV)
The Man who fed hungry people, who let kids crawl all over Him, who wept at the grave of His friend is the face of God! We must not allow ourselves to think of God as a remote Being, somewhere, out there, powerful but not here and near. Read the Gospels seeing God as Jesus reveals Him!
What does this mean for us?
It means that we can share our lives with God, that we can know Him, relate to Him; yes, really love Him! Those without faith may mock us, or think that we being childish – rather like the little girl having a tea party with an imaginary friend but we will know Him. When we sense His Presence and receive the Spirit of God to live in us; life will change. That sense of being alone, which is so common, is replaced with a sense of belonging, and we will find our place in the family of God.
So what’s your need today?
Is it for guidance? Is it forgiveness? Is it empowering to tackle some new task?
Is it strength to stand up to evil, to make a Kingdom difference? Is it just for Someone to care and share your joy and/or sorrows? Come to the Savior! He is our Friend. Find a quiet place and talk with him in prayer, making it personal. Then, wait; listen, and receive the grace that He promises to those who love Him.
Here’s the word from the Word – The Bible reminds us that “we have a great High Priest who has gone to heaven, Jesus the Son of God. Let us cling to him and never stop trusting him. This High Priest of ours understands our weaknesses, for he faced all of the same temptations we do, yet he did not sin. So let us come boldly to the throne of our gracious God. There we will receive his mercy, and we will find grace to help us when we need it.” (Hebrews 4:14-16, NLT) In a world where we often feel like a number or a function, there is One who cares for us, who loves us, who knows our greatest fears, our secret dreams, our hidden sins, our public successes, and our heart! He loves us and desires that we love Him.
He is our Personal Savior- accessible and understanding.
What a friend I’ve found,
Closer than a brother;
I have felt Your touch,
More intimate than lovers.
What a hope I’ve found,
More faithful than a mother;
It would break my heart
To ever lose each other.
Jesus, Jesus, Jesus — Friend forever.
What A Friend I’ve Found
Copyright: 1996 Curious? Music UK (Admin. by EMI Christian Music Publishing)