As a pastor, one of the questions I am asked most often is some variation of, “I feel like I’m stuck in my relationship with God. What can I do to get unstuck?”
A daily relationship with God is just like any other healthy discipline in that it takes work. The more effort you put into it, the more your body craves it. I want to be clear; I am not saying you have to work hard to receive your salvation from God. Our salvation is a free gift of grace by faith in Jesus, but “knowing” God is a daily effort.
For some reason, when it comes to our relationship with God, we want to "feel it" before we initiate effort on our end, but it usually works the other way around. After the initial zeal of our conversion experience (or latest renewal) wears off, it is our efforts that drive our desire for God.
So here are 4 suggestions for helping you recharge your passion for God.
Read the Bible every day, no matter what
I love to read the Bible, but don’t be fooled into thinking when pastors read the Bible something “magical” happens every time. If I'm reading my Bible every day, maybe on Wednesday and Friday something really awesome happens, but on Monday, Tuesday and Thursday I just get done reading and move on. I've actually gotten in a rut recently myself and, like clockwork, when I stop reading my Bible daily, my "feelings" for God start drying up. Desire for reading the Bible comes from reading the Bible. It never works the other way around. Start reading, preferably earlier in the day, and just write down some thoughts about anything that stood out, even if you have to exaggerate it a little. The more you read the more you'll want to read.
Read a good book
I know, I know, more reading, right? It's weird how that works. Maybe it's because it forces us to sit, relax and slow down, or maybe it's because authors know how to write what we need to hear, but whatever it is, something about reading a great book about God sparks something in my heart when I need it most.
Go serve the homeless
It sounds crazy, but for me, nothing restarts my passion like helping someone truly in need. It makes me feel good (I don't think that's the point, though) and reminds me of how it feels to be used by God. Don't promote it or get your friends together, just you or you and your family load up one night and go serve food to the homeless. It represents the Gospel so practically that it can't help but draw you closer to God.
Lead someone to the Lord
Probably the most powerful thing that you can do for your relationship with God is helping someone accept Christ. This is the hardest of all the suggestions because it’s hard to even know where to begin. Start by praying for God to help you not just befriend someone, but actually lead them in receiving Christ.
Did I mention read the Bible every day?
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