“This is what the LORD says: “Let not the wise boast of their wisdom or the strong boast of their strength or the rich boast of their riches, but let the one who boasts boast about this: that they have the understanding to know me, that I am the LORD, who exercises kindness, justice and righteousness on earth, for in these I delight,” declares the LORD.”
– Jeremiah 9:23-24
I have been taking an International House of Prayer University course called The Excellencies of Christ, by Allen Hood. It is knocking my socks off. Each session leaves me speechlessly dumbfounded about how little I know about Jesus. My desire to know more about Him has become overwhelming. I am going through this course with a few brothers in the faith and it is causing us all to want to give ourselves to pursuing Him with our whole hearts.
The focus of the course is all about Jesus and knowing Him. As I read through the notes and watch the teachings each week I find myself in awe of whom Jesus is and how He is a wonderful man. As I study the Word and set my eyes on Him I find myself wanting to give more of my time to knowing Him and what He thinks of me. One thing that I have learned is that God has created us perfect for one thing: receiving His love. The Father gave us His Son to die on a cross that we would receive His love, meaning that His love is for us and we are perfect for receiving it.
When we receive God’s love through the sacrifice of Jesus it causes us to love His Son. Which really brings God’s whole purpose into light. He created us for relationship that we would know Him, and that in turn, He would know us. Ultimately, He wanted us to understand the Father’s love for us so that we would love His Son with the kind of love that He has for us –unrelenting, wholehearted love.
In the last weeks I have noticed my heart yearning to give Jesus unrelenting, wholehearted love. I realize that to give Jesus that kind of love I have to know Him in the deepest way because He is the very source of the love that I pour out. I share this with you to first of all encourage you to stir your hearts to know Christ. Allen Hood shares in the course that we can not know God exhaustively because He is just to big and magnificent but we can know God truly and I encourage you to grow your knowledge of Him truly. Secondly, I share this with you to let you know that I am fully given to this pursuit of knowing Him and fulfilling His purpose for myself and for my family. Know that I am extremely thankful for your generosity to provide financially for our family so that we are able to give ourselves fully to what God has called us to. I pray that the Lord would mark it your treasure in eternity what you give to us and that He would be gracious to you and give you peace.
Some might read this and thing well that is really inward focused in that I would say that God is all about me knowing Him and sharing in that one-on-one relationship. Some might say well isn’t God about us sharing His love with others around the world? To which I would respond that I am not in disagreement because it does sound selfish at first glance for me to what to give myself to knowing God, His love and wanting to love Him back. But when we love God back truly it looks like worship, spending time with Him in prayer and studying the Word but it also looks like loving others. In our response to love God back He desires obedience and it is in our obedience out of love that He is most honored. Therefore this message is not totally inward or outward its just about the reality that our inward love for God is the source for our outward light into the world. May the Lord bless you and keep you!
Original Post: http://jakedcrawford.com/jesus-focus/