I’ve been feeling this moving in my soul for the last few months, a rustling of wind that’s barely felt, but just enough to make me stop and say, “Ok God, what are you trying to tell me?”
And this, the most embarassing of revelations: that though I’ve been writing about pursuing real intimacy with God and pointing women to Him, I haven’t been spending much time there myself. Sure, I’ve been reading my Bible and praying honest prayers.
But something was missing. Something more. Something deeper.
Just two weeks ago I sat in the pew at the Authentic Intimacy conference, listening to Dr. Juli Slattery share how she had been a Christian for years, serving in Christian ministry in a prominent position, yet still found herself starving for real intimacy with God.
She shared the story of Simon the pharisee from Luke 7: he served God religiously, was in the same room with Him, even sat at the same table, yet he wasn’t in an intimate relationship with Him. He completely missed the heart of Jesus, all wrapped up in his piety and good works.
And then there was Mary, the sinner who knew just how much she had been forgiven. As she fell at His feet, no act of devotion was too big for her; overwhelmed with love and affection, she worshipped Him with all she had: her most precious perfume and her hair. And Jesus accepted her devotion.
I want to be Mary, but too often I’m right there with Simon, spending all my energy doing great things for God instead of worshipping Him in the stillness of my heart.
Juli continued, telling how she fell on her face one night and cried out with the most desparation and honesty she could ever remember. She wrestled all night, asking God for more and searching Scriptures for a Word from Him. And God took her on a journey over the next 6 months that led her deeper into His presence and into His vision for Authentic Intimacy.
As Juli shared her testimony, I stood enraptured. For this story is so similar to my own, except that I once had tasted His goodness and feasted at His table, and then I walked away, nibbling instead at the buffet of this world’s pleasures, no longer feeling hungry for Him because I’ve been too full of distractions.
But her testimony stirred a desire deep within me, and when she invited us to fall to our knees, I gladly bowed before my Savior and echoed her prayer:
“God, take me deeper. Deeper, Lord. I don’t know how to worship You like Mary did, but I want to learn. I want more of You, Jesus, in my life. I want You to be the object of my affection and all my devotions.”
And slowly, ever so slightly, an ember began glowing in my heart. He’s been fanning that flame more and more every day, and I know He will answer my prayer–and all our prayers–for more of Him. Because He is the Rewarder of those who dilligently seek Him.
Over the next few weeks I’ll be sharing what the Spirit is showing me about pursuing real intimacy with God, hungering for God, and finding satisfaction in God. I hope you join me as we ask God to take us deeper.
Your turn: Have you experienced a time when you felt a feep hunger for God? What did you do about it? What happened next? I’d love to hear your stories…