This continues from the previous Blog article. The first installment of this two-part article can be found here.
This Blog article is taken from content based on “It’s Over!” A series on Brilliant TV that is based around Graham’s landmark book, “The Nature of Freedom.” You can check out either of these by visiting those links.
…But that wasn’t what was happening because I had too many negatives in my mind and heart.
Too many fears, anxieties, stress…using performance to try to get “somewhere.” And the idea of a devotional life? That was just another reinforcement of my own limitations.
I was continually “trying” to have a quiet time with God.
Prayers were a checklist of what I should be praying for. Reading the Bible was an exercise in logical truth application.
The more I longed for real freedom, the more inhibited and restricted I felt in my relationship with God.
Every time I read the Gospels, I was sure I loved Jesus. I knew about Him, but I wasn’t sure that He… knew… me.
I was convinced that I wasn’t good enough or doing enough.
How much was “enough?”
I was living to serve Him, but found it so hard to enjoy Him. All my self-effort was to get God to use me so that I could be acceptable to Him. I hadn’t realized that God is not a user… He’s a Lover.
Difficult, tough circumstances were a common occurrence in my life. I was always battling something in myself, convinced that my lifestyle was causing me to be judged and punished in some way.
The teaching we received most was concerned with avoiding sin… not about the joy of becoming righteous.
My life was a roller coaster ride of self-exertion in performance and the uphill struggle to stay free before God. And control was the issue for me.
How do I stay in right relationship with God through the ups and downs of life. If God was in control, why did I feel so out of control? Why was my spiritual life such a failure? I was crying out for holiness, so why was He not controlling my experiences and managing my daily life?
I know, what a mess eh? And maybe that was just me…. but maybe that’s a few of you too.
The good news here is that God is delighted to liberate you from those old ways of thinking and poor experiences!
When we think of a “devotional time” with God, most of us have a history of coming just as we are… with all of our issues, problems and dire circumstances.
But He comes to us just as HE is: unchanging in His true nature, with HIS perspectives, how HE sees us, what He loves about us and His purpose for today.
You come to God as HE is, not as you are.
Devotional life is about you connecting with Him and allowing His beauty and His nature to overwhelm you with Goodness and Kindness.
It’s so good to relax in Him and let His love wash away all the negatives, all the stress and all the weariness of trying to be someone for God… rather than letting Him be Someone in you!
A lifestyle of devotion is where He happily takes the initiative …and we have the joy of response.
The full teachings on Brilliant TV include a lot more transformative content, check it out! 😊