As a youth pastor, my favorite question to ask the youth over coffee was, “How are you and God doing?”
It’s a beautiful query, isn’t it? For one thing, how our lives answer that question IS the point. But secondly, most people have no idea how to answer it—so even just posing the thing tends to mess with their heads.
“Uh, well, I guess I’m doing okay… sometimes, I… but you know… (blank stare). What do you mean by that?”
“Exactly what it sounds like. How are you and God doing?”
“Um, well, I guess… I guess… I know I could be doing better on my daily devotions, but I do pray a lot. Before bed.”
And that was typically about it. Even when I ask adults that question, most aren’t too sure how to answer—and when they try, their reply usually describes some form of “devotional correctness”—or lack of it. Which is interesting, because you won’t find a single verse in scripture instructing us to measure our relationship with God by the regularity of what we call “daily devotions.” (Please download my free EBOOK, Finding Home, if this is news to you).
If we have a relationship with Jesus, then we have interaction with him. An “intimate” relationship with Jesus describes “intimate” interaction—regular, passionate, deep, and meaningful. God does who he says he is, which means when we interact with him on a personal level, it will have an effect on us. God speaks, and God works. Which means if I have a relationship with Jesus, a good chunk of my answer to the question, “How are you and God doing?” would describe what God has been saying and doing in my life—and how I’ve responded to those words and initiatives.
What has God been saying to you lately?
What has God been up to in your life lately?
Those are more specific than “How are you and God doing?” Right? And yet, once again, most church-goers I know can’t really answer those questions.
God has a pair of questions he likes to ask, too. Questions woven through scripture from Genesis to Revelation, though they’re phrased a thousand different ways. Here they are:
“Do you love me?”
“Do you trust me?”
And he’s not looking for words, per se, but lives. Lives that say “I love you, Jesus.” Lives that say, “I trust you, Jesus.” So… let’s put our questions together.
How are God and I doing?
– What has God been saying to me lately?
– What has God been up to in my life lately?
– Where is my life showing a deepening, real, sacrificial love for Jesus?
– Where is my life showing a deepening, real, risk-taking faith in Jesus?
Let’s ask ourselves these questions regularly. Even better, let’s ask God these questions—and act on his answers.
Oh these are good and challenging questions.
a) God has saying to me to slow down and listen (Be still and Know)
b) God has also been showing me new ways to worship him through Ann Voskamps book A Thousand Gifts. It is the most awesome ‘experience’ of drawing others into the presense of God. If you haven’t read it, I will encourage it.
c) Giving up what I want… or think I want for the Good of others and most of all the good of my marriage.
d) The risk taking faith is mostly taking form on my facebook, it is used as a platform for evangelism and showing God to others most of the time and also my blog that is written. It is hopefully not about me. Thank you for the challenges.
Absolutely great questions!!