Following rules can give us a false sense of security.
In my devotional time the other day, I came across this insight in the Jesus Calling devotional by Sarah Young: “Men tend to multiply duties in their observance of religion. This practice enables them to give Me money, time, and work without yielding up to me what I desire the most—their hearts.”
Ms. Young goes on to write, “…they provide a false sense of security, lulling the soul into a comatose condition.” These rules form routines that can be followed with minimal effort and almost no thought.
What God searches for in us is “an awakened soul that thrills to the Joy of My Presence.”
This didn’t strike me as a mind-blowing revelation, but it did stop me and make me think. How often do I simply go through the motions with God? In my daily time with him, how often do I read my Scripture passage, my devotional, my spiritual growth book, my prayers by rote?
My hands are holding the book, my pen and notebook are at hand ready to record insights, my eyes are seeing the words. Yet my brain is somewhere else. Going over what I need to do today. My goals, my tasks, my agenda. Or going over yesterday and reviewing what I didn’t get done or whatever slights or hurts I felt from others. In other words, everywhere but on entering into His Presence.
This Christmas season, I’m struck with a fresh desire for more of God, making my relationship with Him deeper and more intimate. We are about to celebrate the greatest gift ever given. And I don’t want to take it lightly anymore.
My determination is to treat my daily time with him as the most precious time of my day. No matter how long it lasts each day, I want to focus it on Him, on praise and worship and listening.
I’m looking forward to church services as times in close communion with Him and fellow believers, celebrating His love for us. I’m looking to move past the rote and the formulas and into His Presence.
How has this time of year affected your relationship with Him?
Great reminder, Henry, of what’s most important in our walk with God–intimacy, abiding, not doing for doing’s sake. This was a timely word for me. Thanks.
Thanks for visiting, Dennis. I’m glad the post could minister to you.
Blessings and Merry Christmas.