And this is the real and eternal life: That they know you, the one and only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom you sent. (John 17:3, The Message)
There is a world of difference between knowing about God and knowing God. Mark Twain said, “The difference between the almost right word and the right word is really a large matter—’tis the difference between the lightning-bug and the lightning.” Knowing God is like the lightning. Once we have experienced the difference between knowing about God and really knowing God, which results in a personal relationship with him, our lives will never be the same.
A.W. Tozer said, “Knowledge by description may lead to knowledge by acquaintance. May lead on, I say, but does not necessarily do so. Thus we dare not conclude that because we learn about the Spirit, we for that reason actually know Him. Knowing Him comes only by a personal encounter with the Holy Spirit Himself.”
My good friend Alex told a beautiful story about knowing God, while standing in the pulpit at his father-in-law’s funeral. A few years earlier his father-in-law called Alex late one night and asked him to come over. He had some questions about God and his faith. Well, Alex jumped at this opportunity to share his faith with him and hopefully answer his questions about God. His father-in-law knew about God, but Alex wondered whether he really knew God. Alex used this metaphor in his explanation because his father-in-law would understand if he used Troy Aikman and the Dallas Cowboys in his explanation: “I know you really love Troy Aikman. You know all about his stats on the football field. You actually also know about his weight and height and even his shoe size. You know about his wife and family. But do you really know Troy Aikman? If you called him and left a message, would he call you back? Could you run up to him and tell him about your day?”
There is a huge difference between knowing about Troy Aikman and really knowing Troy Aikman.
Alex then concluded his story and metaphor about relationship with these words: “I know you know about God, but do you have a personal relationship with God? How much time do you spend with him and how much do you talk with him? Have you read his Book? Have you asked him for help and have you seen him supply all your needs?”
Alex understands that this is where the metaphor breaks down. You see, God knows us even when we just know about him. He loves us more than we can imagine. He purchased us with a price, forgave our sins, and adopted us into his family with an inheritance that is out of this world. And he desperately wants us to know all about him and love him in return. He wants us to spend time with him. He knows the plans that he has for us—“plans for welfare and not calamity to give you a future and a hope” (Jeremiah 29:11, NASB).
And the very good news is that Alex’s father-in-law now knows God’s promise to those who reallyknow him and love him. He is now living the life that the God he knows promised.
When you rush into God’s arms, he really wants to hear about your day. The Lord we have come to know already knows all about us and loves us with abundant mercy and grace forever.
September 2, 2015
Copyright 2015 Links Players International
The Links Daily Devotional appears Monday-Friday at www.linksplayers.com.