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New Series Beginning January 10

ABIDE: Intimacy with God in the letters of John

Abide graphic 3It’s not uncommon for the Christian life to be marked by seasons of quiet restlessness in our relationship with God. Sometimes the busyness of our daily routine robs our time with God and spoils our sense of intimacy. Sometimes our sin and shame build a wall between us. Sometimes unmet expectations throw us off, leaving us disenchanted and suspicious. Other times we’re not sure what happened, but our relationship with God feels distant, unsettled, superficial, disconnected, or dry.

And yet, no matter how distant we feel or how disenchanted we are, no one can escape this longing for intimacy. Even those who have never sought it, know deep in their soul they were made for intimacy with God. As Augustine says in his Confessions, “You have made us for yourself and our hearts are restless until they find their rest in you.” We crave intimacy with God. We were made for intimacy with God. We will never be at rest without intimacy with God. But what does real intimacy look like?

This is the question that 1–3 John will answer for us, with its invitation to abide in God—to make our home in him. To dwell securely in him and find the rest that our wandering hearts can find nowhere else.

And as we’ll see, intimacy with God is neither checking out of this world nor indulging in it. It is Christ-centered, holy, and produces obedience. It’s not some vague or mystical spirituality, but a relationship with the Son that is grounded in the Scriptures. It’s not even about escaping the world for heaven, but overcoming the world by faith. Intimacy with God is resting in the perfect love of God, and reflecting that love to others.

Wherever you are in your journey, the letters of John invite us to come home to God. Abide with him—make your home in him and find the only intimacy that can satisfy our restless hearts.