Thursday, October 14, 2010
As I was looking around and thinking about some things, I thought about how I was sitting there all by myself. It seemed kind of ironic to me, how accustomed I’d gotten to leaning on someone else’s company at church. It felt familiar to do that. Comfortable.
I thought about how appropriate it was, though, that I was sitting in church alone. How good it was for me. You see, I was reminded how my relationship with God is an “alone” one. I can’t rely on my husband or anyone else to bridge the gap between me and the Lord. I can’t rely on the church to grow my faith. That’s up to me and the choices I make within my own heart. No one else can grow my relationship with God. It’s between me and Him.
I have to make the choice to ask Jesus into my heart. I have to do that alone. No one else can make that choice for me. And no one else can walk me into the gates of heaven or hell. I do that alone as well. I will stand before God – alone. So it bears good reason that I’d need to praise God alone, pray to God alone, and sit in church alone from time to time! No one else to rely on or lean upon. Just me and the Lord.
That’s as it should be at times.
I think we grow so used to relying on others. We rely on others to tell us how to be, how to walk as Christians, and what to do. We expect a pastor, Sunday School teacher, or friend to grow our faith for us. But really, all they can do is motivate our hearts. It’s up to us to do the growing and the seeking.
I think that’s why sometimes people fall away from the Lord so easily. We act surprised but really, their Christian walk had no deep roots in it. It was all surface talk and walk. It was for “show.” Maybe not intentionally – but still.
We are the only ones who can personally speak to the Lord about what is going on in our hearts and souls. We are the only ones who can hear God speaking and whispering back to us. It’s a personal relationship! Sure, others can be led to pray on our behalf. They can be led to take action for us, or speak to us. But they can’t hear what God is telling only to us. They can’t make the choice of a will that needs to decide if it will serve the Lord in all it does. They can’t do that for us. We have to do it alone. And we have to face God someday – alone.
We need the support of other believers in our lives. They give us the strength, encouragement, insight, and direction we so often need. But we need to use that same strength, encouragement, insight, and direction and apply it in our lives when we are away from the crowd – when we are alone.
If you are used to be around others and leaning on someone else’s faith to pull you along, try standing on your own for a change. Try sitting in church – alone. Praying to God – alone. Singing and praising Him – on your own. Watch how He speaks to you and see how your faith grows and ignites. That’s what it’s about, my friend. Personal relationship.
And He longs to have it with you. So that when that ONE DAY comes and you and I have to stand (or kneel) before Him, that we can tremble with respect and love – instead of fear and doubt.