Stephen spoke this morning on our personal relationship with God, reminding us that God lives within us and never leaves us.
Many of us enjoy going for walks, especially in the countryside where we can soak up the wonders and beauty of God’s creation. God enjoyed walking with Adam and Eve in the cool of the day in the Garden of Eden (Gen 3:8 TNIV), but that peaceful relationship was marred by sin and God’s purpose now is to see that fellowship restored.
God reveals Himself to us through His Son and lives in us by His Spirit (Rom 8:9 TNIV). Each of us can have that Eden-like experience of walking with God, knowing His protection, guidance, leadership and touch on our lives. Sometimes, however, we do not feel His presence; we can be in the wilderness (as Jesus was when tempted by the devil, but Matt 4:1 TNIV reminds us that He was led into the wilderness by the Spirit of God.) Even at those times when we feel alone and do not feel God’s presence, He has promised to be with us, never leaving us or forsaking us. Our relationship with God is not just in the cool of the day, but at all times: 24/7! God wants to be part of our lives all the time: not just a ‘side order’, to be tagged on to the ‘main business’ of our lives, but an integral part of our everyday living.
Having God’s Spirit with us ‘fills in’ all the holes in our lives. Just as Polyfilla fills the cracks in the walls and makes a new permanent fixture where there were holes and gaps, so God’s Spirit restores our lives:
The Christian life is not about God being an ‘add-on extra’, someone we turn to only in a time of crisis or doubt. When in a restaurant, we can have a ‘main order’ and a ‘side order’, but often the best way to experience these is together, on the same plate! God wants to be the centre of our lives, working to create in us the image of Christ, never leaving us to go it alone but always with us.