Part 2 in my series on Religion Vs. Relationship.
“God wants from you a love that lasts, not more religion. He wants you to get to know Him in a deep and intimate way, not just go to more prayer meetings.”
(Personal paraphrase of Hosea 6:6 based on The Message Bible.)
Studying about God;
Spending time with God.
I realize this is just a different way of putting the introductory definitions, but, like a life-changing quote, a profound object lesson, or a witty joke, it bears repeating.
And it presents to us a couple of good questions to ask ourselves:
Am I spending more time studying theology than I am just basking in His presence?
Am I spending more time contemplating religious doctrine than I am in having a spiritual two-way “conversation” with Him?
If you answer yes to either of these, that’s a pretty good sign you’re practicing religion rather than developing a relationship.
This is what the Pharisees of Biblical times did. They could quote reams of Scripture verbatim. They obeyed every rule they were supposed to follow. They said all the right things. They practiced everything their religion expected of them.
But they never entered into a true personal relationship with the God they were trying to worship.
How about you?
Do you spend all your spiritual efforts on studying theology and doctrine, contemplating the philosophic mysteries of spirituality, reading your Bible like it’s a textbook on mystical existentialism?
Are you keeping Him close to you in your heart…
Spending time just being in His presence…
Letting His love wash over you as you show Him the love you have for Him?
Go to Him now. Spend some time communing with Him. He’s calling to you.
* If you’d like a pdf version of this series in its entirety when it’s done, let me know in the comments or by email and I’ll email it to you.
* Image(s) courtesy of Wikimedia Commons.
*** COMING SOON ***
* More in the “Religion versus Relationship” series.
* “Falling Leaves” — A literary short story about a man who’s love is unexpectedly resurrected in a cemetery.
* “I Don’t Like Likes” — Actually, that’s not true!”
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Nakomai’s Immortality (CAUTION: Rated PG)