This is a big stumbling block to many who would otherwise become followers of Christ. Unfortunately, it can turn into a brick wall to many.
It really IS a valid question… after all, two of the main tenants of Christianity is that (1) we love God and (2) we love others as ourselves. Those are both pretty tall orders for even the most good-natured among us.
So how DO you learn to love someone you don’t know and/or can’t even see? Let’s look at a couple of secular examples and you’ll see how possible this actually is.
I’ve always been a lover of music. Growing up I loved, loved, loved, Luther Van Dross (as well as Freddie Jackson, Peabo Bryson, and Gerald Levert to name just a few). I felt such a “connection” with them through them through their music that I almost felt like I knew them. I certainly felt like I knew them more than God, Jesus, or the Holy Spirit. The real reasons, however, behind my feelings were (1) I sought them out through their music and (2) I not only allowed but actively cultivated those developing connections.
The same thing is possible with God. As a matter of fact, the same example of music from above could bring you closer to God because all christian music (or at least what I listen to) is Christ-centric. Whereas secular music talks about love, hate, relationships, etc., christian music talks about Jesus and the God kind of Love. If you haven’t tried listening to any lately it’s not what your parents listened to. Nowadays christian music sounds just like secular music… it just has a different focus.
Now, I’m not saying that listening to christian music will make you love God or Christ. What I AM saying is that if you have a tendency to build connections through music then a change in the type of music you listen to will help you build different connections.
So that’s a START.
I also want to point out that the “relationship” was not there on the part of the performers; they didn’t even know… much less care about me. It was totally one-sided. I cultivated that one-sided relationship by being a devoted fan and listening to all their music, reading articles about them, and, if I could have, I would have attended their concerts.
(A relationship with Jesus, on the other hand, is a two-way street. He’ll be just as close to you as you’ll allow Him to be.)
Imagine for a moment that you’re standing in a store and you look up and see two boys walking toward you. One you have no feelings whatsoever for and the other you’d literally die for.
What’s the difference? One is your son and one is a new friend he just met in the mall.
Now, here’s the real question… why do you love the one child and not the other? It’s because you know him, you’ve spent time with him, you have a relationship with him, you know his likes, dislikes, fears, hopes, and dreams. The other you know nothing about so no feelings have ever developed.
Are you starting to see how it may all fall on your own mindset and actions?
If you made an effort to seek the presence of God the way you’d seek to be in your favorite band’s presence then God would at least start to grow on you a little. Then maybe you could take it a little further and make an effort… through His Word (the Bible) and through prayer… to spend time with Him, get to know His likes, dislikes, hopes, and dreams and… furthermore, what He has in mind for you and your life.
Talk about getting to know someone! How could you NOT get close to God if you were making efforts like that? You’d have no relationship with your son without trying. You didn’t know your wife/husband before you decided that you wanted to know that person better and then made the effort to do so.
The same is true for a relationship with God and His son, Jesus. There’s a saying that’s so true: No God, No Peace. But, Know God, Know Peace.
So, how can you love someone you don’t know? Get to know Him. It’ll be the best investment of your life.
To Your Success…
Mary Segers B.S., MSW
Your Home Time Management Expert, Coach, and Speaker
Helping You Reach Your Home Time Management Goals
… One Step at a Time
One-on-One Consulting with Mary Segers