Thu | May 28, 2020

Rekindle your relationship with God during this pandemic, minister urges

Published:Sunday | March 29, 2020 | 12:16 AMShanna Kay Monteith - Sunday Gleaner Writer

Christian minister and businesswoman Kayan Douglas told Family & Religion that the enemy would have it that Christians panic during the COVID-19 pandemic, especially in light of the temporary ban on public gatherings.

She further noted, however, that the situation should be viewed as a great opportunity to create a deeper relationship with God.

According to her, “Intimacy is what God prioritises. That’s why He created us – so He can express His love. Use this opportunity to build that one-to-one relationship with God. Read the Word more, and pray more. Don’t just pray as if you are in warfare mode, but pray to Abba, your Father, your Daddy. Pray to Him, who is the truest friend of all. Talk to God about everything. Get down to the things you were usually too busy to talk to God about and enquire His direction for. When all this is applied, there is supposed to be no issue with persons not opening up in worship when church reconvenes to normal. Worship begins at home.”

The importance of developing this spiritual closeness with the Maker, coming in contact with Him in what is described as “the secret place of the Most High”, is being highly encouraged as the world battles this crisis.

Having an intimate relationship with God, says Shana Schutte, blogger and speaker with the ‘Focus on the Family’ podcast, means realising that abundant life will never be found in another person.

In a blog post dated over a decade ago under the title ‘Intimacy with God, the Way to True Fulfilment’, the author shared the timeless thought that mankind’s greatest calling is to love God most (Matt. 22:37-40) as in His love, fulfilment is found that no human can provide.

In five steps, the Christian writer outlined ways in which one can experience an intimate relationship with God.

According to her text, the first step is to embrace the truth that intimacy with God has no contenders.

“The first step to developing an intimate and fulfilling love relationship with God is to admit that the abundant life He promises will never be found in another person. Instead, as the definition of zoe (life) shows, true abundant life is internal, and it’s found in Christ alone,” she wrote.

Step two noted a need to accept that a fulfilling, intimate love relationship with God is personal.

According to Schutte, “ Some things with God are so personal, so intimate, that they cannot be described with words; they can only be felt with the heart. This is how true intimacy with God is; we feel that no one else can really understand the special bond that we share with Him because it’s altogether personal. If you haven’t ever committed yourself to a personal relationship with Him, it’s not fraught with difficult requirements and religious duties. He doesn’t ask that you change yourself before you commit yourself to Him; He just asks that you come as you are, confess your sin to Him, recognise your need to have your sins forgiven, and accept His gift of forgiveness that He has offered to you through His death on the cross (Matt. 27:1-66, 2 Cor 5:21). After you have done this, you can begin a life-long conversation with Him, which is part of the abundance of zoe.”

She noted that the next three steps to developing intimacy between self and the Creator are talking with God, spending time with others who believe in Christ, and being patient.

“Just as close relationship with another person requires conversation, so relationship with God is the same. Conversing with Him happens through reading the Bible (His main way of communicating with those who love Him) and prayer (a two-way conversation between you and God). As you pray, you will learn how to hear God’s voice, just as Jesus says those who know Him do.

Lastly, remember that just as developing intimacy with another person takes time, so it is with relationship with God. As you grow to trust Him and believe what He says in His Word more and more, your love affair with Him will become increasingly fulfilling, and the abundance of zoe will grow inside your spirit and soul,” Schutte wrote.