One commonality that unites people who grow spiritually is a deep sense of need. What yokes them together is the idea that spirituality is not optional. Whether by revelation or through a confluence of circumstances, truly spiritual people come to the conclusion that life apart from the Son does not work. They witness their true conditions and look at themselves in the true light of day, recognizing their need for a Savior. They also conclude that salvation cannot be obtained outside of the name of Jesus Christ.
In addition, a sense of desperation drives them towards Christ. This desperation is not circumstantial; it is not borne out of a financial or physical need or personal want. Instead, it is borne from a heart yearning for Christ that cannot be satisfied by any other thing. There is an inner discontent that can only be assuaged through contact with the Savior.
Non-negotiable Contact with God
Spiritual people long for Jesus the way a starving man longs for food. They yearn for Jesus the way a desert wanderer longs for water. They seek Jesus with the same urgency a drowning man has as he gasps for his next breath. They crave Jesus the same way a heroin addict craves his next hit. There is nothing optional about the way they seek God. There is nothing leisurely about their pursuit of Him. There is only a dogged attempt to mesh with the Savior, driven by unquantifiable desperation.
People who take spiritual leaps personify the following verses: “As the deer pants for streams of water, so my soul pants for you, oh, God” (Psalm 42:1). “I have treasured the words of His lips more than my necessary food” (Job 23:12).
This type of passion for God is foreign to cultural Christians. Cultural Christians have an amazing way of compartmentalizing their spirituality. They put it in a box reserved for weekends only. However, serious Christians have a spirituality that is pervasive. It overflows into every area of their lives. Their spirituality informs what they watch on television, their dating choices, their business dealings, and their conversations. Christ is their most valuable asset and they would not trade Him for anything.
Check Your Priorities
In today’s non-stop world, our biggest spiritual problem is the idea that time with Christ is negotiable. We do not deem time with Christ as essential; we see it as optional. When we create our agendas for the day, we often place prayer or Bible study time on it. Notice, however, that if we are running late, or if there is an unforeseen circumstance that shrinks the amount of time we have to accomplish tasks for the day, we begin to prioritize the task we will actually carry out.
I have treasured the words of His lips more than my necessary food (Job 23:12).
We put intimate time with God on the trading block and, in some cases, trade it for things that don’t bring us a meaningful return. We trade time with God for work, school, dating, hobbies, and social media. As a result, our spiritual lives revolve around concerts, plays and church revivals with very little personal connection between events.
God wants so much more for you. He does not want more from you; He wants more of you.
Draw a Line around His Time
I have one simple admonition. Place a barricade around your devotional time.
Develop a consistent time where you can meet with God along with a consistent place of quiet where you can escape the noise and bustle of life. Guard that time with God like a mother hen guards her chicks. Don’t negotiate it anymore. It is your daily consistency in personal meeting time with the Savior that will enlarge the borders of your heart. It is daily connection that will replenish what yesterday’s withdrawals took from you.
It is that personal contact that will fortify you for whatever life throws at you that day. It is your connection to the Vine that will keep your soul feeling energized all day long. Your consistency will be the springboard for a huge spiritual leap.
DeblEaIre Snell is the Speaker/Director of Breath of Life, and the senior pastor of the Oakwood University Seventh-day Adventist Church in Huntsville, Alabama.
All scriptural texts are taken from the King James Version unless otherwise indicated.
This article is part of our 2022 September/October Issue