As we begin to think practically, it’s important to consider what intimacy is NOT. Intimacy is not based on checklists or performance. Intimacy does not happen simply by doing anything. Intimacy is fueled by love and the desire to be with and enjoy someone else.
The same is true with God. You cannot grow in intimacy with God simply by reading your Bible more or praying more. You don’t grow closer to God by helping others, or serving in new ways.
Isaiah reminds us that our righteous actions are nothing in the eyes of God (Isaiah 64:6). It is also in Isaiah that God describes how the people honor him externally with their words and actions but have hearts that do not love and desire Him (Isaiah 29:13).
It’s not so much about what we do, but how and why we do it. Fueled by love and desire, reading the Bible more and talking to God can help us grow in intimacy with Him. Without proper motivations, these activities can fill us with pride (I Corinthians 8:1-3).
This means that our hearts desperately need God’s help in this area. We need Him to guide our hearts and our motivations. We need Him to do for us what we cannot do for ourselves.
What does your heart tend to focus on – the things you do or the motivations behind them? Talk to God about your answer.
Pray Psalm 19:14 – Let the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be acceptable in your sight, O Lord, my rock and my redeemer.