Our first I AM statement that we are going to explore is I AM created for relationship.
We can trace it all back to the garden, when God created us. The very first thing that God said was ‘not good’ can be found in Genesis 2:18. “Then the Lord God said, ‘It is not good for man to be alone.’” From the very beginning of time God created a need in man and woman to be in relationship with someone. But God didn’t leave them alone – He walked with them in the garden. Picture yourself in that setting: You, your spouse or friend, and God. Together. In relationship.
Our husband, family, friends and kids will fill a valuable part of this inner need, but in the end they will fail to completely fulfill it. This deep longing inside us can only be fully met in a relationship with our heavenly Father.
“But seek first his kingdom and His righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well..” Matthew 6:33
This one verse gives us insight on the secret to being fully satisfied in your relationships. We are to seek God first! Then and only then can we be healthy enough to offer ourselves to others and be full enough to not deplete those who are around us.
One way to seek God first is to spend time with God. Now I know you all know this but I am not just talking about making sure you get in your quiet time each day. A relationship is a two way street. It involves speaking and listening. It involves time…quality time and quantity of time. Think about your husband or your best friend. What is their favorite dessert? Their favorite activity to do on the weekends? What delights them? What makes them sad? What is their 10 year plan? To answer these deeper questions you need to spend time with them and get to know them.
Fortunately or unfortunately the more my kids spend time with my husband the more and more his humor rubs off on them. Now I found myself surrounded by 5 people with a very dry wit. As I get older, I look more and more like my mom. When I was younger I didn’t see it as much. In my opinion I actually looked more like my dad’s sister than my own mother. But then I realized something. Because we were around each other a lot and spent time with each other we watched and learned things about each other. We began to take on the same facial expressions, the same phrases and the same mannerisms. I have half of my mom’s genes and those similarities come out the more we spend time together.
The same is true when we spend time with our Heavenly Father. We learn more about His character traits-the way He talks, the way He responds to us and others and the way He acts. The more we spend time with Him and have a relationship with Him, the more we will become like Him. And isn’t that what we all want?
This week I challenge you to do two things to remind yourself that you were created to be in a relationship with God.
- Wake up each morning and thank God for another day. Let Him know that you want to devote this day to Him. Ask Him to help you pause and listen for His guiding voice today. Then ask God if there is anything that He would like you to for sure get done today. Pause for 2-3 minutes and see what comes to mind. (Set a timer on your phone if necessary.) Write it down and make it a point to get those things done that day.
- Each night as you lay in bed talk to God about your day. Tell Him what you did and how you felt while you did it. Then when you are done, ask Him if there is anything He would like to say to you before you go to bed. Then sit for 3-5 minutes in silence and see if you hear anything.
You may not hear anything the first day or even the fifth but you will begin to create a habit of focusing on your number one relationship each and every day. I do promise that the more you do it the more you will begin to hear His voice. This simple step will help you confidently live out your day knowing you are strengthening your relationship with Him!
The one thing I ask of the Lord — the thing I seek most — is to live in the house of the Lord all the days of my life, delighting in the Lord’s perfections and meditating in his Temple. Psalm 27:4 New Living Translation (NLT)
“You must arrange your days so that you are experiencing total contentment, joy, and confidence in your everyday life with God — that and that alone is what makes a soul healthy.” -Dallas Willard, quoted by John Ortberg in Soul Keeping