Friday, March 06, 2009

Intimacy with God!!

Can there be a more vital message than this? In the midst of life with confusion, trial, suffering, tribulation - I am increasingly coming to realise that the only thing that can meet that longing is God's passion for His people. So I was thrilled and greatly encouraged to read Terry Virgo's latest blog;

"God isn’t interested merely in how you can serve him. He wants you to hear the clear, gentle whisper, ‘I love you. I’m for you. I know your sighing, your longings, and your heartbreak. I know what you’ve been doing for me and how little you’ve been appreciated for it. I hear you when you cry out in desperation.’ It’s this gentle whisper that melts your heart".

One of the insidious lies of legalism is that all God cares about is what we DO. But rather the grace message preaches the truth - it's DONE - it's DONE - it's DONE! There's been so much argument about "indwelling sin" and John Owen the Puritan didn't help matters by producing a thick volume on how to "mortify" sin and basically concluding - you can't until you die! But when you read a paragraph like Terry's next - sin couldn't be further from your mind!

"I once looked up ‘delight’ in the dictionary. It said ‘great pleasure and satisfaction’. But I wasn’t satisfied with that, so I searched for it in a thesaurus. This is what I found: ‘laugh, smile, get a kick out of, hug oneself, rave, bask in, enjoy, wallow, have fun, exhilarate, relish, elate, thrill, ravish, intoxicate, entrance, enrapture, purr.’ Isn’t that wonderful? When God looks at you he purrs with delight!".

And again more specifically Terry writes to those overcome by exhaustion in life and tired of fighting (like I am today after finding out I can't go to Hong Kong unless I leave my job and having just endured a 1 and a half hour grievance hearing at my old work!);

"How do I find healing from exhaustion? It lies in the gentle whisper from God, ‘I love you. I’m delighted with you. You make my heart sing whenever I see you.’ That’s what overwhelmed great Christians throughout history and that’s what restores your soul – a fresh experience of intimacy with God and a new revelation of his grace".

And again;

"God has a wonderful way of working healing into weary people. If you drift away from him, he doesn’t abandon you. No matter what you do, you’re always his delightful child. His thoughts about you have never changed and never will. Surely this is what grace is all about".

How awesome and lavish is His grace?! This beautiful verse from the Song of Solomon sums up perfectly how I am feeling about God right now. But what's even MORE mind-blowing is that the Bible is clear that this is actually how HE is feeling about me! (See how much people are missing who incredibly think that the Song of Solomon is a sex manual for husbands and wives?!)

"You have stolen my heart, my sister, my bride; you have stolen my heart with one glance of your eyes" (Song of Songs 4:9).


Peter Day said...

Absolutely awesome post!

Jon Sidnell said...

Great post, Dan! It almost exactly mirrors where God has been taking me in the last couple of days :)

I love what God is doing around the earth at the moment in recovering grace and removing our proud emphasis on what we can do. It IS done!

And the world is still on tenterhooks to find this out. Keep on speaking it!!

Chris Welch - 07000INTUNE said...

You'd really need to know it was God's Word for you to go to Hong Kong with your new job at risk.
There are genuine doorways in God though. I don't want to send your head spinning...but
my life is radically different because 1. I went to spend time in Germany hearing Mother Basilea Schink when I was 16. 2. Because I left university when I did I have a still pretty unique foundation of praise and worship know this still has to be fully identified with in this country. 3. Because I attended some of those pretty one off "Melchizedek" events with Ern Baxter.the Bible weeks etc.

I have to say the price was ...humanly speaking ...a lot of this naffed me up from a human perspective. It meant I did not roll along in a kind of easyfit English career path. But some of these bits of concrete that God laid in my spirit back then...which set me on various paths of believing - are now in these last months forcing their way out in our local arena...and ofcourse onto the blog.

All those bods who obeyed God's call to attend some of the first inhouse Schools of ministry with Morris Cerullo in San diego in 1979 and 80....(not me) may have blown their natural lives apart...but are now heads over large churches or whole church groups in their respective nations.

It's a hard call....and in the end we can only go with what we have peace in our spirits for. I do not have anything clear for you...I'm as keen as Pete Day that you should go....but I also wondered at the time whether this would be a step too far...with all the finance you'd need to find in addition to daily bills.