How to get closer to Jesus
What if God asks you this question: “would you rather know me or know about me?” As you know, it’s one thing to have cognitive knowledge of God and something completely different to enjoy a personal relationship with him. You know what I mean – to recognize his voice whenever He speaks and to see His hand at work when others do not. One scenario speaks to comprehension, the other intimacy. When people ask me how to get closer to Jesus, I have two super easy answers. I’ll share those in a minute.
But first, let me use my husband as an example.
Anyone who knows my husband knows he has a very distinct, deep raspy voice.
I can easily spot his voice out of a crowd. Most people who know him probably can too.
However, my familiarity is different.
I know when he’s upset, curious, stressed, or nervous.
It comes rather naturally to me.
See, while others know him cognitively and socially, I know him intimately. I know what his whispers mean. I know when his spirit is vexed. I feel his heartbeat without even touching him.
You know where I’m headed…
This is the sort of close relationship we want with the Father, right? The best part: He wants it with us too!
It’s all about the “knowing”.
It’s one thing to know a person or know of them, it’s another to walk in intimate closeness and communion/fellowship with them.
Be careful of that surface, cognitive, social “knowing” when it comes to God. It will work against you when God wants you to do something “big”, bold and wonderful for the Kingdom.
If you somewhat (kind of sorta) know Him, you’ll never have the confidence for the audacious adventures He calls you into.
In other words, you won’t feel the safety to step outside your comfort zone and obey Him when it’s necessary.
To be close to Jesus, you must be obedient to Him.
Think about it for a second. Have you ever noticed when God tells you to do something [a little out of the ordinary] your brain immediately inserts itself into the conversation? Logic instantly screams “NO! DON’T DO THAT! It doesn’t make any sense for you to do that!”
I’ve got a perfect example from my very own life. As I’m writing this, our country’s economy is in a dubious state. Many are laid off and furloughed. Many are losing income across the nation. I’m no exception.
Well, this morning, in spite of my recent pay reduction, the Holy Spirit led me to give my usual, ENTIRE tithe. Yes, He did!
Let me tell you, one way to recognize God’s voice is to weigh it against your own. Me, personally, would NEVER have desired to pay a tenth of my regular salary when I’m not receiving that much anymore. Girl, that was clearly the Holy Spirit!
Anyway, my cognitive, rational-thinking self (brain) was like “But, I’m making so much less money now.”
About that time faith intervened and said: “obey God, He will always take care of you”. Appropriately, I gave it.
After all, this economic situation is not God’s fault.
The house of the Lord still needs resources. Actually, they need it more so now since people are being furloughed and laid off. The church has to be in a position to help. So, I gladly paid my regular tithe. God told me to and I know His voice. Besides, it’s all His anyway!
Note: I am not sharing my story to encourage anyone else to do the same or to bring glory to myself. But I think this is a perfect illustration of how faith and knowledge can work directly against one another. It’s also a perfect example of the importance of knowing God’s voice for one’s self. Intimacy with God will help you obey Hs voice.”
To Know or Not to Know…
In the Bible, the term knowing has several connotations.
To be clear, I am not a Bible scholar, but I am smart enough to know that you can know someone in a casual sense, but not really KNOW them.
For instance, think of Michelle Obama. If asked, you can probably state her professional background, hometown, and even her children’s names – but do you really know her?
Did you say “yes” you know her?
Girl, please. If you truly know Michelle, then you can tell me what color she wore to her first dance, the restaurant she and her first boyfriend had dinner, or whether or not she has a birthmark.
Get my point? Most of us don’t know that woman, we just know about her.
How sweet it is to know HIM!
One of the greatest joys in my life is discovering the depth of God’s love for me. Almost every day, I find a new revelation of how much He gave for me and how much I owe him."God owes me nothing, but I owe Him everything." Click To Tweet
Let’s put it into perspective. The infinite, unsearchable God of the universe extends His holy, blameless hand down from heaven to be in relationship with me. Me?
Yes, me and you too! 🙂
It’s incomprehensible, but oh so very true for me and for you too. Our response must be to love Him back and to do what we must to know Him as intimately as we can.
Only then, He can use us as instruments of righteousness for His glory. Trust me, Christian woman. It will cost you to know Him intimately. It will cost you in time, in resources, and in effort.
Don’t worry though. None of that matters because the rewards are so incredible! He really will walk with you and talk with you every single day!
Just so you know, an intimate encounter with Jesus will include fellowship in His sufferings too, but it won’t compare to the riches of knowing Him. I promise.
So, back to my original question: do you know Jesus or do you just know about Him? The answer to the question “how to get closer to Jesus?” lies within your reply.
Two surefire ways we can know Him…
1. You’ll need your Bible.
You must spend time reading the Word of God to know Jesus.
Go ahead, dive into scripture with careless abandon! Be sure to listen too. Holy Spirit will lead you.
Just today, I was heading to Matthew where I’ve been studying, but Holy Spirit sent me to Psalms! What jewels awaited me there!
Trust the process. He unveils Himself to those who seek Him in the scriptures.
Remember, if you’re a new Christian, you may not understand everything you read. Wanna know a secret? No one does, but it’s ok; you’ll understand more and more as you go on studying the Word. You will see patterns of how God moves, speaks, etc.
Time in the Word yields unending benefits and the Holy Spirit provides valuable insights to guide you along the way. You can also use commentaries from LOGOS or BibleGateway.com. So fun! It’s like a treasure hunt!!! It really is.
Sometimes, I literally kiss my Bible (don’t worry, no one is looking) because it gives me so much life and so much joy!
2. Your prayer life helps you get to know God too.
Secondly, whatever you do, do NOT neglect personal, quiet, and exclusive time alone with God in prayer.
Make time to just talk to Him– then, to listen.
You may find prayer times/duration will fluctuate every once in a while, and that’s okay. However, you must be consistent in order to get to know Him deeply.
Before long, you will not want your prayer time to end. Trust me.
Hey, I don’t claim to know everything or even very much about God, but I do know His voice and I love, love, love his Word.
Christian Sister, for me the last thirty-two years walking with Him have been astonishing, fulfilling, and definitely life-changing. Mostly in prayer and Bible study!
Transparently speaking, I think what I know about God is comparable to the tip of a stick pin, but, I’m learning more and more about Him every day! It’s just joy unending.
If you truly want to know Jesus, it’s within your power. I love how Crosswalk.com’s article – adapted from Anne Graham Lotz’s book, Pursuing More of Jesus puts it.
” Death produces power that leads to more blessings in life.”
You will have to ‘die’ to some things to be closer to Jesus. No longer will it be about you. You’ll “die” to your wants, your desires, your urges, and your ego. Nevertheless, I’ll say it again…it will be so worth it!
I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself for me.Galatians 2:20
In the final analysis, the responsibility is all yours. Chase the Lord and pursue Him in prayer and in His Word. I promise you’ll find Him. He will make sure of it!
Get to know Him for yourself, Christian woman! Now, you’re ready the next time someone asks you “how to get closer to Jesus?”
Scriptures you will enjoy
reading and studying…
25 But whoever looks intently into the perfect law that gives freedom, and continues in it—not forgetting what they have heard, but doing it—they will be blessed in what they do.
11 I have hidden your word in my heart
that I might not sin against you.
Colossians 3:16 (NASB)
16 Let the word of Christ richly dwell within you, with all wisdom teaching and admonishing [c]one another with psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing [d]with thankfulness in your hearts to God.
Jeremiah 15:16 (NASB)
16 Your words were found and I ate them,
And Your words became for me a joy and the delight of my heart;
For I have been called by Your name,
O Lord God of hosts.
How to get closer to Jesus – Prayer!
1 Peter 3:12
12 For the eyes of the Lord are on the righteous
and his ears are attentive to their prayer,
but the face of the Lord is against those who do evil.
29 The Lord is far from the wicked,
but he hears the prayer of the righteous.
2 Chronicles 7:14
14 if my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and I will forgive their sin and will heal their land.
You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart.
Still wondering: how to get closer to Jesus?
Here are 5 verses that will give you perspective. I love this Youtuber!
Remember, I said to expect some lifestyle elements!
Here is one. Do you have a wax burner? I totally love mine. It makes the room smell heavenly! I like to burn it while I read my Bible.
I love candles too!
My favorite candle of all time was given to me by a sweet young lady at my church.
It smells fabulous!
How can I describe it? Well, it reminds me of luscious, warm spices like clove, nutmeg, and cinnamon. Girl, I used that candle so much, it was down to the wick and I was still trying to light it!
Seriously, it had so much wax lurking in the bottom I couldn’t throw it away.
Being as cheap- I mean frugal – as I am, I melted the candle by creating a double boiler effect.
Once the wax melted, I poured it into my little trays (they came with the burner fragrances).
After one hardened, I placed it on the warmer! YAY! It worked!
I get to enjoy that scent for many more months!
I couldn’t find a burner like mine.
This warmer is cute and you can grab
it on Amazon.Com or click the pic to see it.
I am an Amazon affiliate.