Yes, You Can Have a Relationship with God!

A relationship with God? Really? Think about that for a moment!  You actually have a relationship with the God of the universe!  So what does that really mean? The word relationship implies a connection, bond, or involvement with someone. When you invited Jesus into your life, you initiated a “connection” with God. A connection that will have a daily impact on your life! This connection results in a relationship with God that is personal and intimate!

When you invited Jesus into your life, you began a relationship with God that is very personal and intimate. Knowing about God is not the same as knowing Him personally and intimately. Many Christians find it hard to really trust God, because they don’t really know Him. When you know Him, you will be able to love and trust Him!
 Take a minute to consider your present relationship with God. 

What kind of connection do you have with God? Are you bonded to Him? What kind of involvement do you have with Him on a day-to-day basis? How would you describe your relationship?

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Ashley’s Story

“I always put my friends above God. In fact, my life revolved around my friends so much that I began to get involved in reckless behavior just to seem cool to others. Pretty soon I got involved in drugs, sex, and alcohol. My life was out of control, and I felt worthless, with no purpose other than to get high. Then I even lost my friends. One day someone told me that Jesus Christ not only created me, but wanted to be my best friend. I couldn’t believe it at first. Later, I decided to ask Him into my life. Since then, God has given me a new purpose in life and helped me break my addictions. I now have many new friends, but the greatest friend of all is Jesus Christ. He accepts me for who I am, and tells me that ‘He will never leave or forsake me’ (Hebrews 13:5).”

The great theologian A. W. Tozer once said, “What comes into our minds when we think about God is the most important thing about us.” And what you think about God will affect your relationship with Him!

When you invited Jesus into your life, you initiated a “connection” with God.
 Consider the relationships that you have with the people in your life. Some of them are close, some on the surface, and some rather distant. It depends on how well you know someone and how much time you spend with them that determines the quality of your relationship. And a relationship with God is much the same … the more you get to know Him and the more time you spend with Him, the closer your relationship with Him will be. 

What do you presently know about God? Where has your information come from?'

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Now is the time to develop your relationship with God by growing in your knowledge and experience of Him. Knowing about God is not the same as knowing Him personally and intimately.  Many Christians find it hard to really trust God, because they don’t really know Him. When you know Him, you will be able to love and trust Him! 

This means it is really important that our ideas concerning God mirror what is in reality true about Him. Knowing God is critically important for living! If you do not truly know God, the world often becomes a strange, mad, painful place, and when life offers you disappointment–which it surely will–you will stumble and blunder with no sense of direction or meaning.

In his book, The God You Can Know, Dan DeHaan observed, “I have discovered a common weakness among the Christians of today, they are weak in their understanding of God and His character.” Ignorance of God and what He is like, results in a life of doubt and distrust.  We need to really know God and not just have some sort of idea about who He is! 

So how do we get to know God better? By reading His Word and allowing the Holy Spirit to reveal more of Him to us!  We need to search God’s Word with the intent of getting to know and obey Him. 

What has been your experience of God up to this point in your life? What has influenced those experiences?

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“What comes into our minds when we think about God is the most important thing about us.” A. W. Tozer

What do you want to know about God? What can you do to learn more about God?

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What is one step you can take to help strengthen your relationship with God?

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Psalm 46:10 tells us, “Be still and know that I am God” (NIV). There is tremendous value in stepping aside from the rush of the day and taking time to quietly get to know God. Let Him renew your mind as you pray, read the Bible, and think.

Paul said in Philippians 3:10, “For my determined purpose is that I may know Him [that I may progressively become more deeply and intimately acquainted with Him, perceiving and recognizing and understanding the wonders of His person more strongly and more clearly]” (Amplified Bible).

How does this verse from Philippians apply to your life right now?

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Colossians 1:15-16 says, “The Son is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn over all creation. For by him all things were created: things in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or powers or rulers or authorities; all things were created by him and for him” (NIV).The apostle Paul goes on to say in chapter 2 verse 3, “In Him are hidden all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge.”

As you consider these verses from Colossians, what impresses you most?

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Jeremiah 9:23-24 proclaims, “‘Let not the wise boast of their wisdom or the strong boast of their strength or the rich boast of their riches, but let the one who boasts boast about this: that they have the understanding to know me, that I am the LORD, who exercises kindness, justice and righteousness on earth, for in these I delight,’ declares the LORD” (NIV).

What do the verses from Jeremiah teach us about God?

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 When you became a Christian, you did not sign up to become a
part of some religious system. You decided to have a relationship with the God
of the universe!
This is a relationship that God initiated and maintains. 
Ignorance of God and what He is like, results in a life of doubt and distrust. Jesus died on the cross to restore the relationship that we are destined to have with God that has been broken by sin.

As Christians, we believe that we have been created specifically to have a relationship with God, but our sin separates us from Him. Jesus Christ walked this earth, fully God, and yet fully man. He died on the cross to restore the relationship that we are destined to have with God that has been broken by sin. After His death on the cross, Christ was buried; He rose again, and He now lives at the right hand of the Father God in heaven, making intercession for us forever.

The intimacy of this relationship is revealed to us in the Bible. Ephesians 1:4-5 says that we are now no longer seen as law-breakers, but we have been adopted into God’s own family as His children: “For he chose us in him before the creation of the world to be holy and blameless in his sight. In love he predestined us for adoption to sonship through Jesus Christ, in accordance with his pleasure and will” (NIV).

As you think about being God’s child, what thoughts do you have? Does this kind of relationship excite you, or scare you? Ask God to help you to experience His love in a powerful way!

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Additional Study: Read The God You Can Know by Dan DeHaan (Moody Press 1982). Take the time to write a summary of each chapter as you go along. As a personal goal, resolve to read one chapter per day!

We learn about God’s character as we read the Bible.  Knowing God’s true nature not only significantly increases our reverence for Him, it greatly decreases our dependence on our own power and strength.  The better we understand who He really is, the easier it is to trust and rely upon Him. Hebrews 4:16 tells us that we are always welcome in his presence. “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” (NIV).

Application:

Before reading this lesson, what was your idea of God? How is your perception of God changing?

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