As the year 2017 is wrapping up, I want to talk about being close to God more than ever; people are dying, mysterious deaths all over the place, the capital of Israel has moved to Jerusalem and wars are breaking forth. The Bible tells us to be of good cheer, because Jesus has overcome the world for us.
The topic I choose to talk about intimacy is about the story of the prophet Samuel and his going to anoint David. In 1 Sam 16:1 The Lord said to Samuel, “How long will you mourn for Saul, since I have rejected him as king over Israel? Fill your horn with oil and be on your way; I am sending you to Jesse of Bethlehem. I have chosen one of his sons to be king.” 2 But Samuel said, “How can I go? If Saul hears about it, he will kill me.” The Lord said, “Take a heifer with you and say, ‘I have come to sacrifice to the Lord.’ 3 Invite Jesse to the sacrifice, and I will show you what to do. You are to anoint for me the one I indicate.”
This is what intimacy with God will do for you, God Himself will be the one to tell you what to say, how to go about your business and not get into trouble but it will require you spending time with God, it will require you being intimate and really getting to know God, it will require being in His presence alone and talking to Him and listen to hear Him talk back to you in His still small voice.
Prophet Samuel was frightened of King Saul and did not want Saul to get angry with him but because of the close relationship that Samuel enjoyed with God, he asked God how to go about anointing a son of Jesse, whilst the King Saul is still on the throne and alive. I can imagine that was a difficult position to be in for a prophet; because it would be seen by people that he is a hypocrite but it was not that at all; it was about God Himself rejecting Saul.
God the master-planner Himself gave him Samuel a strategy, which he followed., vs 4 Samuel did what the Lord said. In order to have a close relationship with God, it would mean not being a people pleaser and being a God pleaser and chaser; it would mean hearing mean things being said about you and you have to ignore it when you know you are obeying God.
If we are going to develop our intimacy walk with God or intimacy relationship with God, we will have to do things by the Spirit. By that I mean, hear God and hear Him for yourself; you will have to be intentional with God. Jesse made his seven sons to parade before Samuel, the first born came Eliab and God said in vs 7 But the Lord said to Samuel, “Do not consider his appearance or his height, for I have rejected him. The Lord does not look at the things people look at. People look at the outward appearance, but the Lord looks at the heart.”
We cannot afford to continue to play games in God’ s courtyard any longer, the enemy is on the rampage and it is important that we get close to God. Close enough to hear His heart cry, familiar enough for God to call us His friend and to have a affection for Him, whereby He will not do anything without revealing it to us, His children on earth.
God told prophet Samuel what was on his heart; that is how friendship works and that is what God wants to have with us all. God wants to be familiar with us and verse versa. He wants to tell us what is on His mind. God created mankind for intimacy; seek God first in all you do.
My question to you today is are you intimate with God? Did you used to be? Have the issues of life drawn you further away from Him? And now, you no longer hear His voice. Or do you want to be intimate with Him and don’t know how?
In order to be intimate with God the Holy Spirit, you will need to spend time in His presence. In Jn 10: 3 The gatekeeper opens the gate for him, and the sheep listen to his voice. He calls his own sheep by name and leads them out.4 When he has brought out all his own, he goes on ahead of them, and his sheep follow him because they know his voice. 5 But they will never follow a stranger; in fact, they will run away from him because they do not recognize a stranger’s voice.”
In order to be intimate with God, you will need to be able to recognise His voice; when you are close to someone, you can call the person up and before you say your name, the person says your name, that is what having a close/intimate and familiar relationship with someone is all about. This can only happen if you spend time with God; give Him first place in your life and see Him move on your behalf. When you are intimate with God, you will recognise His voice and not heed to the voice of a stranger.
In Matt 10:16, God gives us instructions, “I am sending you out like sheep among wolves. Therefore be as shrewd as snakes and as innocent as doves. In order to be shrewd in this world and at the same time be innocent, it will take having a strong attachment to God, it would mean having God as our companion, it would mean having a warm and affectionate relationship with God – all called intimacy with God.
As the year 2017 is slipping away day by day, as 2018 is on the horizon, let us try to form a close relationship, a close friendship and an affectionate relationship with our Creator, in order that He would direct our steps in 2018.
I end with Ps 37: 23 The steps of a good man are ordered by the Lord: and he delighteth in his way. 24 Though he fall, he shall not be utterly cast down: for the Lord upholdeth him with his hand. As the year is coming to a close, as 2018 is beckoning, I would rather the Lord orders my step and even if I fall, I know I will not be cast down and the Lord will uphold me.