Relationship with God

THE PRAYER FOR ILLUMINATION We invite the Holy Spirit to speak fresh truth from God’s Holy Word. . Join me in a spirit of prayer.

Holy God, we thank you for the ways your reveal and make yourself known to us through your Spirit to more fully understand you. We give thanks for your recorded words of faith from prophets, poets, and Apostles. We thank you for the metaphors that have opened our eyes to more of your love and grace. We thank you for the language that has brought the transcendent, timeless, mysterious God within our realm of understanding. We ask you to reveal more of yourself to us to this day so we can love you whole heartedly and communicate you faithfully and reflect your full image to a world that needs you. Amen.

 

ENCOUNTERING SCRIPTURE                 Hebrews 1:1-4             God Has Spoken by His Son

Long ago God spoke to our ancestors in many and various ways by the prophets, but in these last days he has spoken to us by a Son, whom he appointed heir of all things, through whom he also created the worlds. He is the reflection of God’s glory and the exact imprint of God’s very being, and he sustains all things by his powerful word. When he had made purification for sins, he sat down at the right hand of the Majesty on high, having become as much superior to angels as the name he has inherited is more excellent than theirs.

May the Lord bless this reading from his Holy Word.

TIME WITH GOD’S CHILDREN#504       (verse1 and refrain) “Just a Closer Walk with Thee”

SCRIPTURE                                                  Hebrews 2:5-12           The Son of God – Fully Human

Now God did not subject the coming world, about which we are speaking, to angels. But someone has testified somewhere,

“What are human beings that you are mindful of them, or mortals, that you care for them?

You have made them for a little while lower than the angels; you have crowned them with glory and honor, subjecting all things under their feet.”

Now in subjecting all things to them, God left nothing outside their control. As it is, we do not yet see everything in subjection to them, but we do see Jesus, who for a little while was made lower than the angels, now crowned with glory and honor because of the suffering of death, so that by the grace of God he might taste death for everyone.

It was fitting that God, for whom and through whom all things exist, in bringing many children to glory, should make the pioneer of their salvation perfect through sufferings. For the one who sanctifies and those who are sanctified all have one Father. For this reason Jesus is not ashamed to call them brothers and sisters, saying,

“I will proclaim your name to my brothers and sisters, in the midst of the congregation I will praise you.”

THE SERMON           “Our Relationship with God”

Jesus invites us to the table, inviting us to eat the bread of life and share in the common cup of Salvation. Jesus calls each one of us, known by God and loved. The Holy Spirit comes to nurture us at this table to strengthen us in the way of Christ. Come to this table, each of you known by God to participate in the life of Christ now and forever.

 

** HYMN # 706        “I Come with Joy”

It’s a radical idea. Almighty God, Creator of all things visible and invisible came to earth. The Creator became a creature to deliver the divine message in hopes that people would listen to God’s Son. It’s a radical idea different from any other religious faith, God becomes one of us instead of some power directing our actions and demanding our allegiance. No the God the Hebrew people knew entered as baby Jesus in Bethlehem and interacted with us.

The Incarnation came as a radical idea to the Hebrews. They expected a King like David to rise up in triumph. They were not ready for Jesus to grow up and preach a message from His Heavenly Father. Previously, the Lord used prophets, visions, dreams and various wanderings in the wilderness or exile to communicate with the Hebrew people. These messages and events nurtured their faith and formed a people for two thousand years with varying degree of effectiveness.

God’s people at times grumbled and ignored the messages. At times they repented and returned to be sheep in God’s pasture experiencing peace and harmony. They walked closely and sought God’s divine direction and favor. The times of God’s blessing seemed short and sparse. Their rebellion lasted a long time and generated distance from God’s love and protection.

Into this world, marred with separation, Jesus entered the Roman Empire to call God’s people to walk more closely in the steadfast love of their Creator. Jesus’ message came in word and deed to demonstrate how a person could relate to the God of the Universe. Jesus experienced the human condition and maintained his relationship with His Heavenly Father a priority. He worshipped our God in Heaven and cared for God’s people on earth. He confirmed the message of God by extending love to the least of these and compassion for sinners.

God’s radical call to us remains the same to worship the Lord our God in word and deed. Our God sent our Lord Jesus to reach out to sinful human beings like you and me. The Holy Spirit still works to reach out into our world to connect us with a Loving God, who created us in His image, male and female. Throughout history, men and women develop many different types of relationships with our God. You may have even experienced various relationships over your years of faith.

I found an article on Desert News that describes 10 types of relationships people hold with God.

Late bloomers               The Hurt and Hopeful           The Half and Halfer

The best Friend             The Questioner                       The CEO (Christmas/Easter)

The Sort of                    The Monthly                 The Weekly                             The Daily  

Some half-believe there is a God but not quite sure that God is interested in their life.  They want to believe but struggle with faith. Some bloom late in their understanding of God’s love, or a hurtful crisis that helps them find hope. Others come with questions of faith that seek Biblical answers. I believe God wants to be in relationship with

TGBTG. Amen.

 

10 types of relationships people have with God

The daily believer -

Some worship their God, deity or spirit everyday. Belief Net reported that 68.1 percent of Christians and 91.6 percent of Muslims pray more than once every day. This is the heavy believer. One example of this may be actor Mark Wahlberg, who told The Blaze that he heads to church everyday.

The weekly worshipper

Some Americans don't practice their religion everyday, but weekly doesn’t seem to be a problem. Four in 10 Americans told Gallup in 2013 that they attended a church within a week, which is not unlike years prior — when the percentage of weekly churchgoers hovered between 30 and 40 percent.

The monthly churchgoer

Americans are also heading to church on a monthly basis (about 11 percent of people, according to a 2010 Gallup poll) — and some of them think that church is actually losing its impact on society. But a Gallup poll found that 25 percent of monthly churchgoers believe religion is increasing in influence.

The millennial sort of

Millenials aren’t really about church attendance. A study by Biola University found that one in 10 millennials find church attendance important. Still, you’re bound to find some in the pews.

The Pew Research Center reported that 18 percent of millennials attend a religious service every week — which is lower than the 28 percent of baby boomers who went to services when they were similar ages as the millennials (18 to 29).

The CEO (Christmas and Easter only)

There was a time when many people would head to the pews just for Christmas or Easter, but that seems to be a changing trend. An estimated 4.5 million people go to church on Christmas, according to The Telegraph, but that isn’t that inspiring of a number given that 4.8 million people will shop online on Christmas day. Americans seem to be undecided about going to church on Easter, too, since one in five Americans can’t decide whether they should head to church for the spring holiday.

The late bloomer. Not everyone is on time to church. And that seems to be OK with Bill Blankschaen, a blogger at Patheos. In a tongue-in-cheek article, Blankschaen explains why showing up late to church isn’t a problem, mainly because you’re still attending and celebrating God.

The hurt...but hopeful -- God can be a source of strength, and that’s how many people approach their faith and religion. Prayer has long been a source of comfort for people during tragedies and tough life events.

The half and halfer -- It is not surprising that there are people in the world who are unsure of God's presence. In fact, 2.4 percent of Americans don’t believe in God at all, the Pew Research Center reported. But 14 percent of the people who identified as atheists told Pew that they do believe in God or some kind of spirit.

The best friend -- The best friend. Joyce Meyer, the Christian author and speaker, wrote her thoughts about how a believer can have a deep and intimate relationship with God. And while her suggestions may offer a quick road to building that relationship - and understanding what it means to be close to God - a lot of believing has to come naturally.

The questioner -- You believe in God, but you have a lot of questions. That’s the case with some believers. Bloggers and some bible passages offer insight into how it’s OK to question God’s plan.

 

http://national.deseretnews.com/article/2142/10-types-of-relationships-people-have-with-god.html

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