Have you ever written a letter, sent an email, or made a phone call where the receiver never responds? You start wondering if they ever got the message. As time goes by, you start thinking that you may have done something to make them mad. Then you just get frustrated and figure they are just rude.
Maybe you give them the benefit of the doubt and make a second attempt. Still no response… You take the time to get in touch with them – twice – and they don’t even have the courtesy to respond. You’re sure they got the message, and still they don’t reply. Well, that does it… you just quit trying and chalk it up to, they are jerks!
Okay, lets shift gears. Throughout our lives, even before we accept Christ, God calls us and hopes for an answer. No answer… He tries again… and again… and again. Now that we have accepted and are followers of Christ, God still calls us! This time it is for other reasons. Maybe it’s just to let us know He is thinking of us and that He would like to spend some time with us, perhaps He wants to share some insights He has, or it could be He wants some help with a project. What ever the reason, He is trying to get in touch and stay in touch.
So, the first step in letting God out of the box is focusing on your faith. This is huge… you obviously have faith because it takes faith to believe that Jesus has risen from the grave. The problem is, if you start taking your faith for granted, or perhaps misplace it on your Pastor or some super Christian who obviously (in their own minds) knows everything, you miss out on what God has for you… I mean you, personally, miss out. You are so busy watching what God is doing for others, you miss what He wants to do for you.
Step two is a biggie… realize that God gave us the freedom to make choices. It is our choice to stay in touch with Him or settle for something less. The only way anyone can know if they are truly loved is if the other party has the freedom to chose! God created us to love Him and Him us.
Step three… expect God to answer and get involved. He said He wants to be involved in every part of our lives. I can tell you from personal experience, He is not kidding. It is true, God wants to hear about your problems, He wants to give you things that will make your life better, He even wants to share some of His experiences with you if you don’t mind listening.
It is this step that most people really miss. We may be quick to ask…but we are so involved in our lives that we forget to listen. The funny thing is, once you start really listening and really letting God in to all of your life, it’s a blast. He’s funny and fun, He’s loving and kind, and He never holds our stupidity against us.
Step four… get to know Him. You can build your knowledge of Him in a variety of ways. First, and most important, read the love letters He sent you (the Bible). Don’t settle for someone giving you their interpretation and telling you to believe because they said so. God uses the Bible to talk to us – individually. One verse may mean one thing when you read it and something different when you re-read it! That is why they call it the Living Bible. Another reason to read it is so when someone talks to you or you have a thought – you can compare what is said to what is written. If what is said doesn’t match what the Bible says (or as a minimum the spirit in which it is written), then it is not from God.
As you read the Bible, you get to know God better. You get to know His personality. You get to hear His promises that He made to you. You learn that God isn’t all about beating you down, rather, He is all about lifting you up. He is offering you freedom like you have never experienced.
After reading the Bible, start looking at people who have an honest relationship with Him (not the ones who put on an act every Sunday). The only reason to do this is to see that He is real and personal. Don’t try to be them – God made you just the way He wants you. He might want to tweak a thing or two.
As you let God in, He will show you many things about Himself that is meant for only you, and some that He would like you to share with others.
Step five… enjoy the greatest relationship you could possibly imagine! It’s true, some people may give you funny looks when all of a sudden you begin to laugh and nobody said anything. They may think something is wrong with you when you get chills from the tip of your toes to the top of the longest hair because you just felt God give you a big hug. On the other hand, they may look at you in wonder as you give the greatest advice they had ever heard on any number of subjects.
No matter what you are doing, no matter where you are, God wants you to let Him be there with you. The exciting part is, the more you let Him be involved, the more He will be involved. And, the more you trust and follow Him, the more He will trust and share with you.
With faith and trust (which seem the same to me) in God, your world will change. I promise you, people will notice even when you don’t say anything. When Moses came down from the mountain after meeting with God, he had to cover himself with a cloak because the radiance of God blazed from him and the people could not take it. When you open yourself up to God, people will see that radiance emanating from you, too. It can’t be helped.
To sum it up, trust that God means what He says and has the power to do it. He says He wants a personal relationship with you and if you believe that with your whole heart, hang onto your hat… you will be going on a joyride! He has adopted us into His family and has made us co-heirs with Christ. We are His children and we are loved beyond any human measure. This is the love He wants to pour into us if we will let Him.
I could carry on a long time about the Love God has for us, so I will stop here. Just know, no matter what any person says about what God can or can’t do, your faith will bring God’s love for you alive and He will move in ways you never imagined.