God comes to my life time and time again and wrecks it wrecks the religious ideas and systems that I was believing and practicing; wrecks the ideals I was trying to live by; wrecks my understanding and interpretation of the Bible; wrecks my attachment to forms, structure, and "constructions of man", and even wrecks my understanding of myself and others and my purpose in this world. All for one reason: to bring me back always to Him that is, to bring me back to being a passionate lover "in relationship" instead of a passionate thinker or passionate anything else.
God wants me, heart, body and soul. He IS the passionate pursuer that I want to be.
Don't get me wrong, there's nothing wrong with thinking about God or the Bible or any of that. But the context I've found best "works" for faith isn't ideas it is relationship.
When my engagement of God has taken on more of a theoretical, in-the-mind kind of approach, or I am trying to proceed in my faith in a way that doesn't really acknowledge or let God into the needs of my heart, soul, feelings, imagination, and relations with others really what consists more of our lives than anything else when my engagement of God has taken on this somewhat in-my-thoughts but not in-my-heart or life quality, then He comes and wrecks everything to wake me up to the state of my soul and get me to come back to Him.
It doesn't take very much effort at all, because most of my attachments are, at best, poorly constructed houses of sand and clay. At worst they are houses made of hay or branches that can blow away with the changing of a season. Either way, they make me comfortable and might even be practical and serve well for a season. And God will be saying, "Yeah, I'm right here Jason. That's doing you some good, but I'm here." He even stoops so low as to engage me through some of the forms and things I'm attaching myself to sometimes. In fact, He often does this, I think, because it would be too painful if He was always wrecking everything all the time. Instead, He does it almost all the time. As His child, God disciplines me lightly in that way.
That's all "constructions" are comfortable and practical for a season. Sometimes good to look at too and they can even engage the mind and imagination and time for awhile. In real life, they eventually or immediately produce all sorts of things: guilt, frustration, eventual purposelessness, sometimes wandering, wanting more and not being satisfied when I get it, restlessness, disappointment, me being a jerk in my relationships because I'm not being satisfied by God. Old desires start to be awakened too and sometimes I go ahead and pursue those for a season.
Then God brings a storm and these "constructions" blow away. Or He tries to loosen them from my grip. Sometimes I hold on and we fight because I'm scared of just being with Him and knowing Him. After all, He is God, the Almighty. Totally not like me at all. He is other, not human. Yet He knows me completely. Eventually I give in and then it's just me and Him again. It's amazing, really, that He lets me hold onto things that I don't need or that are hurting me. After all, He's God he could just yank them out of my life with no effort at all. He is such a gentleman and yet He's a Lion too. Respectable, ferocious, and passionate.
I think during these times that I'm back at square one, but I never am. God is gracious and merciful in that way. He reminds me of where we've been and where we are now and then says, "And this is where you'll be next" or way, way, way in the future. And when He reminds me of the past, it is never that bad things I've done only the good that He has brought into my life and where we've been together. This is beautiful.
Whenever we return to God, I believe we return only at the point where we last stepped off the narrow road on which we were following Him. It could be so much different, but that is How God deals with His children. Sometimes He even brings us back further along than where we were before. The Bible has a word for this, I think. It is called grace. That's not the only "definition" for the word, just one.
Anyone who knows me has described me as "passionate." That is, I feel and think deeply and intensely. I am very focused, always have been especially about God. I would say that if I am passionate it is because God made me that way. I can do very little to develop a passion for the Lord except respond to Him. Anyone who has the ability to interact with God (and all do) will find that there is no limit of things to respond to. He is always speaking, always wanting to spend time and show us new things and do things with us.
What I am talking about in being a passionate lover of God is being passionate in relationship to God. This involves all our faculties and not just the mind. This is a story of our interaction and my responses to His invitations, again and again, into relationship knowing Him, interacting with Him, and conversing with Him about life and the present and the future. This goes far beyond just reading the Bible or being in church or praying. It involves places I've been, thoughts I've had, frustrations and joys I've experienced, sadness and pain I've suffered through, injustices I've known, seasons of content and discontent, wanderings in the desert (literally in my case), eating, and enjoying the company that God brings my way.
Really we all have this need to be passionate lovers of God, to be passionate in relationship to and with Him. The cry for every human heart is for satisfying, fulfilling, and joyful relationship with someone. And you can try, but you won't find a complete revelation and ability to enjoy such a relationship anywhere else but God. We can find a measure of satisfaction through people, but with God the relationship and depth our of friendship is as endless and deep as God is. I've tried to find satisfaction in my relations with people and have been disappointed and have returned to Him not sure what to expect sometimes -- knowing that I should have gone to Him for what I was looking for in the first place. His reaction is always, "Jason, I'm soooooooo glad to see you!!! Welcome back!!!"
I chiefly write poetry and a composer of worship songs. Currently I work for the California Dept. of Health. My faith journey began in college and has taken me into many parts of the Church and into missions work in Mexico where I self-published a newsletter. www.jesusexpressions.blogspot.com
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