“The man who would truly know God must give time to Him.”A.W. Tozer
This is not a time to be fickle about God.
- If you aren’t reading your Bible, start now.
- If you aren’t spending time talking with God, now’s the time to get it in gear.
- If you aren’t praying, find you a corner and begin in earnest.
- If you aren’t certain of your standing with God, now is the time to find out.
The times in which we live call for serious and meaningful pursuit, dependence on a true God, and the cutting away the clutter and shallow murkiness that is lukewarmness.
Let’s be clear, there is a difference between being religious and being a Christian. You can be religious, but still not be a Christian. And, a Christian may not necessarily be religious. The two are complete polar opposites and, most often, diametrically opposed.
Many people equate Christianity with doing. Doing good works and deeds. But just like faith without works is dead, so to is rules without relationship.
The primary difference in religion or religiosity and Christianity can be found in that one word: Relationship. Billy Graham actually says it’s two words: Jesus Christ. Put ’em together and that spells the difference between Christianity and religion/religiosity: Relationship with Jesus Christ.
The challenge in today’s society is that we don’t have time. Umm, we don’t take time, quality time, to spend with God. We’d rather be doing because that’s what we’ve been taught. Get ‘er done. Do something, don’t just sit there. We’ve learned that Christianity is in the doing for others and helping others. We’ve been told to act certain ways and say these things, that’s what a Christian is.
But we’ve been led astray. We’ve been sold a bill of goods.
Four of the Ten Commandments deal with our relationship to God while the other six deal with our relationships with people. But all ten are about relationships.Rick Warren.
And, the real news is this: You can’t have a Christian relationship with people without first having a relationship with God.
America has become a haven of lukewarm people who call themselves Christians yet demonstrate otherwise via their actions. In fact, Titus 1:16 declares: “They claim to know God, but by their actions they deny him. They are detestable, disobedient and unfit for doing anything good.”
The days of lip service are done, and the cavernous divide between lukewarm and real Christians is coming to light more and more every day.
Lukewarm living and claiming Christ’s name simultaneously is utterly disgusting to God. He wants all or nothing. The thought of a person calling himself a ‘Christian’ without being a devoted follower of Christ is absurd.Francis Chan.
All or nothing. Hmmm. All too often, we tend to invoke the name of God when we need it, when it benefits us, when we want to defend our position. But it’s that “devoted follower of Christ” that “give time to Him” part (Tozer, above) that trips us up.
So what does that look like? Here are a few thoughts.
- Read your Bible. If you don’t have a Bible, a download is easy. YouVersion is very popular and one of the best Bible apps available. Download it and start reading today.
- Pray. Many of us would say we pray every day. But do we? Prayer is a two-way street, it’s about talking with God, not talking to God.
- Standing with God. Not sure where you stand? Find out here.
- Nurture the relationship. As Tozer says: “…give time to Him.” You may have to give up other things (1 John 2:15-17).
As I mentioned at the top, this is not a time to be fickle about God. Get into the relationship and build on it. Indeed, God is speaking. We should be listening, hearing and understanding, today more than ever before.
He is no fool who gives what he cannot keep, to gain what he cannot lose.Jim Elliot.