GOING NORTH: FACETIME WITH GOD
Series One: HAVE YOU EVER FELT LIKE AN OUTCAST?
Part Two: IS YOUR HEART HUNGRY FOR GOD’S LOVE?
Last week we talked about the Samaritan woman at the well who was hungry for love in all the wrong places until she found Jesus. She didn’t know what she was missing until she found God’s love for her.
So let me ask you something. What if your physical body was missing key nutrients and you didn’t know it?
Have you ever had anemia? You just feel tired all the time. Simple chores like fixing meals or washing laundry sap all your strength. You don’t realize your body needs iron until you get a blood test.
Just like your body needs specific vitamins and minerals to function properly, your heart (not your physical heart, rather, the home of your mind and emotions) needs spiritual nutrition to be healthy.
Did you know your heart can be hungry? Your heart may long to feel valued, it may want recognition, or desire a loving relationship. But we don’t always understand that our heart is in need. So, what are some signs that your heart is hungry?
QUESTIONS TO THINK ABOUT:
HOW CAN YOU KNOW IF YOUR HEART IS HUNGRY?
1. Do you feel isolated or alone?
2. Have you been rejected…again?
3. Do you feel like you’ve been used?
4. Do you think you’re dirty, but nothing seems to wash it off?
5. Have you been labeled, and it seems hopeless to change what others think?
6. Maybe you can’t feel anything. Do you just feel numb?
7. Are you dissatisfied but you don’t know what you want?
Did you find yourself in any of these questions? These are telltale signs your heart is hungry to experience the love and acceptance that only Jesus can provide.
Last week we talked about the Samaritan woman at the well. After five husbands and a live-in boyfriend, her heart was starved for a loving relationship. But she didn’t know it.
However, Jesus knew what she needed. He offered her living water, in other words, a relationship with Himself. This was love with no strings attached—no condemnation, no judgment, no bondage.
Maybe that’s what you need. You’re tired of being disappointed by people.
But there’s one person who will not disappoint you. What your heart really needs is one-on-one time with Jesus.
DISSATISFIED, BUT YOU DON’T KNOW WHAT YOU WANT?
Or maybe the last question is the only question that applies to you. You’re dissatisfied, but you don’t know what you want. Maybe you identify with Nicodemus, the teacher of Jewish law who was a leader among his people.
You go to church, serve God, and try to live a righteous life. You check all the right boxes, but something is missing.
Nicodemus sneaked out of his house at night to have a secret meeting with Jesus. Nobody in his friend group believed Jesus was the Messiah. He risked his reputation to have facetime with the Teacher. Jesus showed him he didn’t need a new set of laws. He needed a new heart. (John 3:1-21). Nicodemus had been following all the rules, but he was starving for a tangible relationship with God.
If you are a pastor, minister, or devoted worker bee at church, you understand.
It’s easy to become overwhelmed with church projects and serving others at the expense of spending quiet time with Jesus. Busy schedules and pressing needs override time alone with the Lord. The tyranny of the urgent takes your focus off the One who created your destiny.
In any relationship, the key to good communication lies in remaining in close contact. We share both our joys and our disappointments. We honor and care for one another. When we experience this type of relationship, we feel like we belong.
You belong to Jesus. You’re not an outcast. He wants you to feel how pleased He is that you belong with Him in His family.
TIME WITH JESUS ISN’T A FORMULA
So how do I do that, you may ask? How do I build a relationship with someone I can’t see?
Or maybe you’ve tried to set time aside to pray and study God’s word, but life gets in the way. What if getting up at 6 am and reading the Bible before you jump in the shower doesn’t work for you? What if every time you get up early your dog wakes up, starts barking, and insists he needs to go out? His yipping starts a chain reaction, wakes up the whole house, and everyone needs you right now. Your heart is in the right place, but you get frustrated because life interferes with your attempts to get quiet with Jesus.
Don’t get discouraged. How you spend time with Him might look different than how someone else spends time with Him. God created you as a unique person and how you relate to Him can’t be found in a formula. Three prayers and a scripture promise in the morning may work for someone else, but it might not fit you.
Neither does God expect you to fit your personality into someone else’s plan. Your time with God will feel comfortable and have no guilt attached to it. He doesn’t wag a finger at you if you miss your devotional time. The Lord understands your efforts to meet with Him. He delights in being with you and is excited for you to know his heart.
He desires loving fellowship with you even more than you want a close relationship with Him.
So how do you get started? Next week we’ll talk about a key to unlocking one-on-one time with Jesus.
In the meantime, are you interested in a free devotional? Check out 30 Days to Defeat Discouragement.
But remember, no pressure. This isn’t about following rules. It’s about following your hungry heart–a heart that desires a deeper relationship with Jesus.
Jesus, I’m not satisfied with knowing you from a distance. I want to feel the joy you experience in having me in your family. Help me to sense your deep love for me.