“Take time for the quiet moments as God whispers and the world is loud” – Ancient Irish saying.
“But let him who boasts boast of this, that he understands and knows me; that I am the Lord who exercises lovingkindness, justice, and righteousness on earth, for I delight in these things” declares the Lord.” Jeremiah 9:24.
The Westminster Shorter Catechism asks the question, “What is the chief end of man?” Many of us know the answer. “The chief end of mankind is to glorify God, and to enjoy him forever.” I disagree with the Westminster book on this point. I believe that to glorify our God and enjoy Him forever is the fruit of attaining our chief end or primary purpose before Him. That purpose is to live in oneness with Him and to experience deep intimacy with Him daily. It is this deepest intimacy that is implied in the phrase “understands and knows Me,” in the passage quoted above.
If we fulfill our purpose as I have stated it, glorifying our God and enjoying Him will flow from our living daily forever. It is for this oneness we were created and were redeemed from our former manner of living. It is for deep intimacy we are placed into this union with Him. This intimate union defines our new covenant relationship with our God and His Kingdom.
Oneness with your God is a highly personal and individualized experience. Just as no two people experience a common friend in the same way, everyone who pursues their God will find Him in their own unique way. As you begin to go deep into the experience of oneness with God, you will to be aware of His continual presence, recognize His voice speaking to you.
Below are some practices and tips I have learned that have helped me in my deepening the intimacy I have with my God and experiencing oneness with Him daily.
- Pray for a greater sense of His presence, of your oneness with Him. Ask your God to reveal His presence in the moment, to increase your sensitivity to His Holy Spirit who lives in you.
- Pray for the removal of whatever your God points out as a roadblock to intimacy. Do not let anything on earth get in the way of your oneness and intimacy with your God. Be sincere about it. Our God will gently work in those who are earnest.
- Develop a daily practice of seeking your God. As with any intimate relationship, this takes time. Ask your God to make His presence a delight to you. This is an engaging search that will begin to fill all your interests. Jeremiah 29:13 “When you search for me, you will find me; if you seek me with all your heart….”
- Look only to your God for the fruit of His presence – love, joy, peace, understanding, greater godliness, holy living. 2 Peter 1:3-4 “His divine power has given us everything needed for life and godliness, through the knowledge of him who called us by his own glory and goodness. Thus he has given us, through these things, his precious and very great promises, so that through them you may escape from the corruption that is in the world because of lust and may become participants of the divine nature”.
The key issue here is this: if you have chosen to know your God intimately and live in oneness with Him, you have chosen a life of richness beyond human understanding. To pursue that life will take everything you are and everything you have. It is a consuming pursuit above all other pursuits.
What you will gain is a life that glorifies our God, a life in which you will find joy and fulfillment as you have never known it. Jesus spoke of this in John 7: “Let anyone who is thirsty come to me, and let the one who believes in me drink. As the scripture has said, ‘Out of the believer’s heart shall flow rivers of living water.’” Now he said this about the Spirit, which believers in him were to receive….”
The new life we have in Christ is in fact His life lived in us and through us. His life in us are the “living waters” that yield the abundant life He promised (John 10:10). Thus, the chief purpose of our living – the “chief end of man” in the language of Westminster – is to know Him intimately and to let Him live His life in us, a life of oneness with Himself. When we do, we will certainly live a life that glorifies Him. We will most assuredly enjoy His life in us now and forever. And what a life it will be!
“The most reliable and proper feeling is often a gentle sense that does not compel. It is like a voice but not a voice; it is a sense that prompts but does not compel. This most precious sense is the operating and anointing of the Holy Spirit within our spirit. Therefore, a life of fellowship means that we have fellowship with God, are connected to Him, and have a mutual flow with Him in everything. We should not focus on doing things that are right, good, or godly. Rather, we should focus on whether we are joined to God, connected to Him, and in a mutual flow with Him when doing things that are right, good, or godly. We should focus on not being separated from Him” – Witness Lee