LG #4: Developing your relationship with God
As we discover the attributes of God by seeking Him and finding Him, we will come to learn and understand how He relates to us and this would change our attitude, perspective and approach to our lives. As this journey of discovering Him unfolds and as you find more of Him, I trust that you will really fall in love with Him.
Tonight we looked at a person who was considered to be a great man of faith. His name was Abraham, but his name was originally Abram. Through the first passage, we see that Abram was messed up! He clearly valued and loved his own life over his wife’s. Due to fear, Abram shows a complete lack of trust in God and tries to take control of the situation with his own plans of lying. But this plan only hurt his leadership of his household and his relationship with his wife Sarai. If he really knew and understood that God’s promise was truly and simply to bless him, Abram would have had nothing to worry about, not even in the face of the most powerful man of the powerful empire of Egypt.
However, as Abraham, he has grown to become a man of great faith. When as Abram he feared death for himself, as Abraham he had grown to know and trust God so deeply he immediately obeyed God’s command to sacrifice his son. Abraham knew God so well he was able to trust that God’s promise of countless descendants was as good as reality, even if it meant surrendering the ONLY son he had (Hebrews 11:17-19). Abraham knew God would make a way. We see that Abraham went through a transformation as can be seen in the characteristics he presents so naturally and confidently: surrendering to the Lord’s commands, trusting the Lord’s promises and loving the Lord.
What happened in between? What journey took place when this man was Abram to this man becoming Abraham? Abram was a mere man and continued to make mistakes but God knew Abram’s battle for control so He continually reassured and affirmed the promise He had first given Abram in Genesis 12:2-3. God reminded him of the promise three times (Gen. 13:14-17, 15:5, 17:4-8) and also gave Abram the new name of Abraham to assure him that this promise is binding and unfailing, because God is eternal and constant.
God gives the promise a final time after Abraham’s test in Gen. 22:16-18. God needed to test Abraham in this way. Remember how in the beginning of his journey, Abram was unwilling to lay down his life for his family? Now we see from God’s test, Abraham was ready and willing to lay down more than his life, his whole family line, because his love for God was that great. And God honors Abraham’s willingness to offer and sacrifice his life by again, firmly promising greatness to come for Abraham and generations following him.
How can we develop our relationship with God? Get to know Him!
Principles of Spiritual Growth: 1. Read the Word, 2. Pray, 3. Obey
These are not mere actions or a formula but a step of discovering God. We are not defined by what we DO. Our actions merely result from who we ARE. We are a people chosen and loved by God. These principles of growth are a necessity to discovering all that God is to discover all that we were meant to be. Amen!