Having a personal relationship with Jesus Christ can feel amazing, the love, the joy, the peace but as Christians these “feelings” should not be our motivation for our relationship with Him.
“Now this is eternal life: that they know you, the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom you have sent.” – John 17:3
When we turn to Jesus, our lives are completely changed from the inside out. The old is gone and the new is here!
The way we view the world and the way we experience the world becomes completely changed. We begin to see what He sees and feel what He feels.
We truly begin to understand what it means to be fully known and fully loved. Fear dissipates and we experience a joy and peace like never before.
This love, joy, and peace can honestly feel amazing but as Christians, this should not be our primary motivation for a relationship with Jesus. Knowing Him is eternal life and it is freedom from the bondage of sin, but we need to make sure that we don’t allow that freedom to turn us into Jesus consumers.
It becomes really easy to go from becoming a servant of Christ, to a consumer of Christ. We begin to stop asking what we can do for His glory and begin to seek what He can do for us. This mindset becomes extremely detrimental towards our Christian walk. When we don’t “feel” His love, Joy, and peace, we begin to question our actions and sometimes even if He is really there at all.
The truth is that He is always there and will never leave us or forsake us. Knowing Him is far more than a feeling especially when we try to relate knowing Him to a worldly version of Love, Joy, and Peace.
More Than A Feeling
More Than Love
We are all born into this world with a “need” for love. Our sin nature separates us from the abundant eternal love of God and each one of us feels this lack.
The world chases after this love through means of the flesh hoping to somehow to fill this void, but this pursuit always comes up short. We always feel the need for more.
Through a relationship with Jesus Christ, we are transformed from being in a deficit of love to an abundance through Him. Knowing Him and His love is not like the love of this world, it is so much more.
We become love conduits for Christ and have the ability to not only experience true love ourselves but allow the overflow of His love for us to pour out into the hearts of those we come in contact with.
There is a universal need for love in this world and Christ is the universal answer. We are His hands and feet which presents us with the task of making His love known to the world. It’s not about trying to love or “feeling” love, it is about knowing love by name and sharing that love with the world.
“Dear friends, let us love one another, for love comes from God. Everyone who loves has been born of God and knows God. Whoever does not love does not know God, because God is love. This is how God showed his love among us: He sent his one and only Son into the world that we might live through him. This is love: not that we loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as an atoning sacrifice for our sins. Dear friends, since God so loved us, we also ought to love one another. No one has ever seen God; but if we love one another, God lives in us and his love is made complete in us.” – 1 John 4:7-12
As His love pours into us through our relationship with Him, it beautifully overflows into our relationships with each other. We can not fully love until we know what it is to be fully loved by Him. When we love each other His love is made complete in us!
More Than Joy
“May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.” – Romans 15:13
The “joy” of the world is nothing more than a momentary feeling of excitement which fizzles out just as fast as it sizzles in. The joy we receive from God is so much more than just a moment of happiness.
This scripture above from Romans says that one way that we receive joy from God is through trusting in Him.
To some this may seem counterintuitive, why doesn’t God fill us up with joy first so that we are more easily willing to trust in Him? Well, the continuation of verse 13 says that it is that we may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit!
Joy isn’t just a feeling we Christians should be seeking from God, it is a reward for trusting in Him which translates into an overflow of hope. When we trust in Him now, we see His faithfulness which allows us to not only to trust in Him for bigger things, but it fuels our hope for eternity with Him!
The only way we can allow ourselves to trust God in a powerful way is to put ourselves into positions that truly requires trust. It is not enough to just say we trust God, we need to take steps of faith knowing He is with us.
When we step out of our comfort zones and truly live for Him, trusting in Him, we will be filled with a greater Joy than this world can ever offer!
More Than Peace
For most of us when we think of peace we probably picture ourselves on a beach somewhere relaxing to the sounds of the ocean as we close our eyes and enjoy the tranquility of the moment.
This is the peace of the world, it is momentary and more importantly, conditional and situational. These zen moments of tranquility are easily interrupted by the world around us and can just as quickly turn from a feeling of peace to a feeling of agitation.
The peace that comes from the Lord is a peace that passes understanding, it is a peace that is not based on our situation or current condition, but is based on something outside of us, the victory of the cross.
“I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.” – John 16:33
In this scripture, Jesus says that peace is found in Him. But it’s not a peace in the world, the very next sentence He says that in this world we will have trouble. It is a peace that comes from knowing Him, the one who has overcome the world.
The most beautiful aspect of this peace is that it can be brought into every situation and it cannot be shaken by the world around us. It’s an inner peace with who we are in Him and the power of knowing that we have been washed white as snow by the crimson blood of the cross.
Knowing Him is so much more than “feeling good”. It’s about deep, true, meaningful relationship with the author and creator of the universe. It’s about knowing and being able to understand the one who knows and understands you better than you know yourself.
As we walk with Him we will experience so many awesome moments that feel like nothing we could ever experience in this world. But we need to not let the feeling of knowing Him ever take precedence over the truth of knowing Him.
He is the way, the truth, and the life, and when we know Him and walk in relationship with Him our lives are changed forever. We gain the hope of eternal glory which far exceeds any feeling we will ever experience now, here on this earth!