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INTIMACY WITH GOD


Introduction Definition: Intimacy: The dictionary defines it as follows: Close or warm friendship, a feeling of belonging together, a close personal relationship, a detailed knowledge resulting from a close or long association or study. Intimacy is also associated with sex. As opposed to: Casual: The dictionary defines this word as follows: Marked by unconcern; without or seeming to be without plan or method; offhand; known only slightly or involving only slight knowledge of somebody or something, superficialnot involving emotional commitment or loyalty; or lacking in seriousness. God sees us as a precious treasure and He longs to have a close relationship with us. More than anything He wants us to have an intimate love relationship and friendship with Him. God wants us to spend time with Him and intimately communicate with Him, to enjoy fellowship with Him, to trust and follow Him, and to give our life meaning and purpose. Thou hast made us for Thyself, O Lord; and our heart is restless until it rests in Thee. St. Augustine The soul of man longs for intimacy. We are called to dwell in the secret place of the most high! To gaze upon his beauty! To nestle into his heart. Our hearts home is in the midst of His heart!

Rev Mutinda Musyimi

1 Cor 2:9 No eye has seen, no ear has heard, and no mind has imagined what God has prepared for those who love him. Our senses cant contain all that is God! It is like trying to measure the volume of the Indian Ocean with a Tea cup. Intimacy brings us to a place where Gods desires become our desires! " O God, you are my God, earnestly I seek you; my soul thirsts for you, my body longs for you, in a dry and weary land where there is no water. I have seen you in the sanctuary and beheld your power and your glory..your love is better than life.."(Psalm 63:1-3) See also (Psalm 84:1-2) HINDERANCES TO INTIMACY WITH GOD 1. POOR SELF-IMAGE (related to feelings of shame & unworthiness) - Some of you are not sure you should hear from God - All of us from time to time can feel this way O LORD, you have searched me and you know me. You know when I sit and when I rise; you perceive my thoughts from afar. Such knowledge is too wonderful from me, too lofty for me to attain. For you created my inmost being; you knit me together in my mothers womb. I praise you for I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well. Psalm 139:1-2, 6, 13-14 See also Hebrews 10:19-22 2.SELF-CENTEREDNESS - That is WE ONLY WANT GOD TO HEAR US James 4:3 When you ask you do not receive because you ask with wrong motives, that you may spend what

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you get on your pleasures. Intimacy is not our agenda imposed on another, but two hearts beating as one, His pleasures becoming ours. - Totally appropriate to ask God for provision, but not if were refusing to hear God. The answer to our self-centeredness is to OPEN OUR HEARTS TO GODS HEART Delight yourself in the LORD and he will give you the desires of your heart. Commit your way to the LORD; trust in him and he will do this. Psalm 37:4-5 We must learn to ask God not only FOR things, but ABOUT things!

Prayer is more LINING UP (with His heart) than LISTINGS (always asking for this and that. This is the confidence we have in approaching God: that if we ask anything according to his will, he hears us. John 5:14 3. UNFORGIVENESS/BITTERNESS For if you forgive men when they sin against you, your heavenly Father will also forgive you. But if you do not forgive men their sins, your Father will not forgive your sins Matt. 6:14-15 Anger & lack of reconciliation in our hearts can block our very means of relationship with God.

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God knows that as we hold onto the wrong of others as unforgivable, we cant at the same time expect to enter His mercy & forgiveness. Therefore, if you are offering your gift at the altar and there remember that your brother has something against you, leave your gift there in front of the altar. First go and be reconciled to your brother; then come and offer your gift. Matthew 5:23-24 4. UNCONFESSED SIN Like with a friendship or marriage, when you both know theres an issue between you that needs to be discussed UNTIL YOU DO IT, YOU CAN NEVER REALLY FELLOWSHIP. God wants to deal with that first and we must OVERCOME OUR AVOIDANCE/HIDING. HOW TO HAVE INTIMACY WITH GOD A.PRESENCE/TIME: The immediate proximity of someone or something. You must devote yourself to knowing the Lord if you want to experience the fullness of friendship with Him. Genuine fellowship with God involves relating to Him on an emotional and spiritual level rather than a physical one. Illustration: "A catfish just 6 inches long has more than a quarter-million taste buds on its body. The mouth and gill rakers are packed with taste buds, and the sensory organs cover the outside of the catfish as well the whiskers, fins, back, belly, sides and even the tail. If you were a catfish, you could taste a slice of pizza just by sitting on it. Catfish says Dr. John Caprio of Louisiana State University, are swimming tongues. - Game and Fish Magazine Application: As a catfish forages through the muck at the bottom of a pond, his mouth, his gills, his whiskers, his fins, his back, his belly, his sides, and even his
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tail are designed to sense the presence of the sustenance he seeks, just by brushing up against it. The same is true of the believer. As we forage through life seeking greater communion with God, we are equipped with a comprehensive set of physical and spiritual sensory organs capable of sensing God's presencein the beauty of the night sky, in the sound of the rushing wind or pounding surf, in the soft touch of a child's hand, in the promises of Scripture, or in the prayers of faithful friends. God can be found everywhere in His creation. ( http://www.illustrationexchange.com). One thing I ask of the Lord, this is what I seek; that I may dwell in the house (presence) of the Lord all the days of my life, to gaze upon the beauty of the Lord and to seek Him in his temple." - David (Psalm 27:4) B. TRUST: Have confidence or faith in. Intimacy cannot exist without trust. If you and I refuse to surrender to and obey God, we can't expect to have an intimate relationship with Him. Yet I am not ashamed, because I know whom I have believed, and am convinced that he is able to guard what I have entrusted to him for that day. 2Tim 1:12 D. DEVOTION: Feelings of ardent love, Commitment to some purpose, Zeal; Characterized by intense emotion. You shall have no other gods before (besides) me (Ex. 20:3). Not everyone who says to me, Lord, Lord, will enter the kingdom of heaven, but the one who does the will of my Father who is in heaven. On that day many will say to me, Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name, and cast out demons in your name, and do many mighty works in your name? And then will I

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declare to them, I never knew you; depart from me, you workers of lawlessness. Matthew 7:21-23

"As the deer pants for streams of water, so my soul pants for you, O God. My soul thirsts for God, for the living God. When can I go and meet with God? (Psalm 42:1-2) Conclusion Intimacy with God is real! It is possible! He has done His part, we should do ours. Let us deal with whatever is hindering that intimacy. The closer we get to Him, the more we see our sinfulness, the more we get purified, the sweeter our intimacy becomes.

Rev Mutinda Musyimi