We talk about death quite often in my household, but often in a joking manner. I have given a lot of instructions to my husband and to my children as to what I want to happen when I go to my great reward. Specifically, since I have slept with a Bunny Rabbit every night for the past 23 years, I have asked that she be allowed to join me in my casket in a cozy little snuggle. As to my funeral, although I would love it if everyone would say amazing and wonderful things about me, my children have promised to tell the story of how one day they observed me in a fit of fury throw an orange across the kitchen.
I’ve asked my husband for certain things to be printed on my headstone. I’ve requested so many things that it will have to be a small font, maybe 12 point, I’m sure. But, on a serious note, a few months ago during Sunday morning worship I told God something that I wanted written on my tombstone, seven words that I desperately want to describe my life:
“She knew God and she loved Him.”
What does it mean to know God? The Hebrew word most often used for the word “know” in the Old Testament is the word “yada.” This word signifies an intimate knowing, it is a knowing by experience. It is the same word that is used in Genesis 4 that described how Adam”knew” his wife…he experienced her.
God desires that we have this deep, experiential, intimate knowledge of who He is. When you know a person, you know their preferences, their quirks, their passions, there favorite things. You know what they are like. My college roommate Nicole and I have best friends for over 25 years. I know that she likes to watch the TV miniseries Chuck, she likes to wear pearls, she gives generous gifts, and she does not like to clean toilets. I know her very well.
It is possible for us to know God with this same level of intimacy. He wants us to know His needs, His desires, His passions, His preferences, and what moves His heart. We are created in His image, and just like we have a personality, God does too, and we can discover what it is as we spend time with Him.
Jeremiah 9:23-24 shows us that God wants to be understood and known. It says says, “Thus says the Lord, “Let not a wise man boast of his wisdom, and let not the mighty man boast of his might, let not a rich man boast of his riches; but let him who boasts boast of this, that he understands and knows Me, that I am the Lord…”
In a nutshell, God is saying that knowing and understanding God is more valuable than riches, wisdom, and strength. He says, “Let him who boasts, boast of this: that he understands and knows Me, that I am the Lord.” The Hebrew word for know, Yada, is used in this verse.
[ctt title=”God wants us to understand and know Him. He wants us to know by experience that He is the Lord.” tweet=”God wants us to understand and know Him. He wants us to know by experience that He is the Lord. #KnowingGod http://ctt.ec/750ic+” coverup=”750ic”]
What about you? At the end of your days, could someone say about you, “She knew God and she loved Him?” Are you actively getting to know God intimately? If not, here are a few things that you can do to get to know God as a person instead of an object of faith.
- Spend time with Him. Whether it is in worship, in prayer, or taking a walk and talking to God. Time together with God yields intimacy.
- Pray the prayer that God always answer, “Lord, I want to know You more.”
- Spend time reading and studying His word. There are multiple facets of His personality that He reveals to us as we study His Word.
- Walk by faith. As you walk out the things that God puts in your heart to do, you will learn more about Him. You will come to know God in a more intimate way as you walk in faith and are obedient.
Oh God, let it be said of each of us, “She knew God and she loved Him.”