Pursuing the Heart of God – Day 6
Mark 1:14-15 says, “After John was put in prison, Jesus went into Galilee, proclaiming the good news of God. ‘The time has come,’ He said. ‘The kingdom of God has come near. Repent and believe the good news!’”
Jesus is the good news—the good news is that God provided a way to a restored relationship with Himself. He sent His one and only Son, Jesus, to pay the penalty for all our sin. Jesus is the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except by Him (John 14:6). Jesus is the good news!
To hear God’s voice regularly, we need to be in a close relationship with Him. God promises in Jeremiah 29:13, “you will seek Me and find Me when you seek Me with all your heart.” It’s possible over the first few days in this journey to a more cherished relationship with God you have not been hearing from God during the two-way conversation time in these exercises. Have you been seeking Him with all your heart? Or does something stand in the way?
It may be time to step back and take an inventory of your standing with the Lord. One of the roadblocks to hearing God’s voice is disobedience or sin. The journey to greater intimacy with Jesus begins with acknowledging your sin.
The God of all creation is righteous and holy. He doesn’t want to be near immorality. So our disobedience, rebellion, and sin separate us from Him. Sin is anything that doesn’t please God. It’s not just committing one of the big ten, like: murder, adultery, idol worship, stealing, etc. Sin shows up in our everyday behaviors, like: gossip, lying, cheating, pride, jealousy, unrighteous anger, gluttony, greed, and judging people, just to name a few.
The Bible very clearly states that those who do not enjoy a saving relationship with God through Jesus are condemned to a life apart from God for all eternity. Born into the sin of Adam and Eve, we are all sinful by nature. Romans 3:23 states, “For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God.” However, despite our sin, God desires to be in close relationship with every individual He created. How is that possible? God sent His Son, Jesus, to bridge the enormous gap that sin creates between Himself and us. This is good news!
Although our sin separates us from God, no sin is too big for God to forgive, and we don’t have to get our lives in order before coming to Jesus Christ. God loves you just the way you are. Romans 5:8 says, “But God demonstrates His own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.” This is great news!
God, in His unconditional, infinite love for His creation, established a way we could be forgiven, redeemed, and reconciled to Him. He sent His one and only Son, Jesus Christ, to earth to be the sacrificial Lamb and die on the cross to pay the penalty for our sins. In doing so, He formed a bridge between a sinful people and a perfect God. He provided the only way we could experience restored relationship with God, the Father. This is fantastic news!
John 3:16-18 says,
“For God so loved the world that He gave His one and only Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish but have eternal life. For God did not send His Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through Him. Whoever believes in Him is not condemned, but whoever does not believe stands condemned already because he has not believed in the name of God’s one and only Son.”
God gives us the opportunity to live with Him eternally, through His Son, when we confess Jesus as our Savior and Lord. “For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord” (Romans 6:23). God promises that we will be saved when we accept Jesus’ death on the cross as payment for our sin and believe in His resurrection from the dead. Did you hear that? Jesus didn’t remain in the grave. He’s not dead! Jesus is alive! We can have a relationship with a living God through Jesus Christ because He lives! Isn’t this the greatest news you’ve ever heard? Yes!
If you have never confessed your sin and invited Jesus into your heart, what are you waiting for? Simply believing in God isn’t enough. To reiterate, Jesus Christ is the only way to a restored relationship with your heavenly Father. Jesus said, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me” (John 14:6). Do you desire to walk with Jesus? Do you want a fresh start in life? Do you want to let Jesus heal your hurts and fill that hole in your heart that nothing else and no one else can fill? Do you want to accept Jesus Christ as your Savior and Lord today?
There is nothing you can do to earn your own salvation, and no measure of good behavior and good works will get you into heaven. It is by God’s free gift of His amazing grace and the death of His Son, Jesus Christ, on the cross that your sins are forgiven, and you are reconciled to God. The way to experience forgiveness of sins and reconciliation with God is to acknowledge that Jesus Christ is the Son of God, accept that He died for your sins, ask His forgiveness, and invite Him to be the Lord of your life. When you do this, God sends His Holy Spirit to live in your heart. This is the beginning of an intimate relationship with God—the living God living in you!
In Revelation 3:20, Jesus says, “Here I am! I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears My voice and opens the door, I will come in and eat with him, and he with Me.” Jesus stands at the door of your heart today and knocks. Do you hear His voice? Will you open the door and invite Him in? If you are not a follower of Christ yet, and your heart’s desire is to know and feel God’s presence and peace daily, then accept Jesus Christ as your Savior and start your new “relationship” with Him today. You may sense the Holy Spirit of God encouraging you to make a decision for Christ right now. If so, say these words in prayer to God:
Dear Heavenly Father,
I confess that I have sinned, and I know that my sin separates me from You. Please forgive me for all my sins. I accept that Your Son, Jesus Christ, came to save me by Your grace. He died on the cross to pay the penalty for my sin and provide the only way back to You. God, I believe You raised Jesus from the dead. He is alive and lives to intercede for me.
Jesus, I invite You into my heart today to be the Lord of my life and give me a fresh start. Thank You for the promise of eternal life in heaven with You, and for the gift of Your Holy Spirit Whom You send to live in my heart right now. Please help me hear Your voice within me and lead a life that glorifies You. In Jesus’ name, I pray. Amen.
Romans 10:9-10 says, “That if you confess with your mouth, ‘Jesus is Lord,’ and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved. For it is with your heart that you believe and are justified, and it is with your mouth that you confess and are saved.” If you prayed this prayer for the first time and were sincere, there is great rejoicing in heaven today! You are forgiven, and you will spend eternity with your heavenly Father. Your fate has been sealed by the Holy Spirit Whom God gave you just now. You are a child of God! Welcome to His family. The Bible says,
And this is the testimony: God has given us eternal life, and this life is in His Son. He who has the Son has life; he who does not have the Son of God does not have life. I write these things to you who believe in the name of the Son of God so that you may know that you have eternal life. This is the assurance we have in approaching God: that if we ask anything according to His will, He hears us. And if we know that He hears us—whatever we ask—we know that we have what we asked of Him. (1 John 5:11-15)
Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old has gone, the new has come! (2 Corinthians 5:17)
If you invited Jesus Christ to be your Savior today, you now have a new life in Him, because He lives in you. By the power of God’s Holy Spirit within you, your actions and attitudes will change. With His help, you will discard your old way of living and seek to live a life that is more pleasing to God.
Record today’s date in your journal. This is your spiritual re-birth date. You are born again in Jesus Christ. Happy Birthday! God adopted you as His son or daughter today. This is the first day of the rest of your life! This is wonderful news!
Or possibly, you invited Jesus into your heart to be your Savior and Lord a long time ago, but sin has been creeping back into your life and you just need to get yourself right before God again. Take a little time with God right now to confess your sin and ask His forgiveness. 1 John 1:9 promises, “If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness.”
Then, repent and turn from your sinful ways. Allow the blood of Jesus to cleanse you from all unrighteousness and wash you whiter than snow (Psalm 51:7). Ask the Holy Spirit to empower you to live a life more pleasing to God. Then, return to this journey in pursuit of God’s heart. Spend time with Him daily and enjoy a more intimate two-way conversation with the Lord. Be still and listen. And God will honor your time with the sound of His voice again.
Dear Heavenly Father, thank You for providing me a way back to You. Thank You for sending your one and only Son, Jesus, to pay the death penalty for my sin, and restore my relationship with You. I confess all my sin before you, especially these sins that Your Holy Spirit convicts me with right now: (list all sins that come to your mind). Lord, please forgive me and cleanse me of all unrighteousness. Remove the roadblock of disobedience so that I may hear and know Your voice in my heart again. Lord, let me hear clearly from you right now. Thank You, in Jesus’ name. Amen.
Two-way Conversation with God:
- Lord, what do you want me to know about the good news of Jesus? (Write all words and thoughts given to you in this moment.)
- Jesus, please share with me your heart. Why did You give Your life for mine? (List all thoughts and impressions you have right now.)
- Holy Spirit, how do you empower me to live a life more pleasing to God? (Record the things you hear in your heart.)
Review the Holy Spirit’s thoughts and impressions you’ve written above. What Scripture comes to mind as you review your notes? Use the concordance of your Bible to look up an impression from God’s Word. Record the verse or passage here. Write all insights and encouragement the Holy Spirit illumines for you as you read God’s Word right now.
Father God, thank You for making a way for me to communicate daily with you. Thank You for removing the roadblocks that stand in the way of my hearing Your voice. I am so grateful for Your unconditional love and grace that continuously gives me second chances, third chances and more. Lord, I look forward to meeting with You again tomorrow. I long to hear Your voice again, so I will know and experience more and more of Your heart. In Jesus’ name, I pray. Amen.
Isaiah 61:1, The Spirit of the Sovereign Lord is on me, because the Lord has anointed me to proclaim good news to the poor.
Matthew 9:35, Jesus went through all the towns and villages, teaching in their synagogues, proclaiming the good news of the kingdom and healing every disease and sickness.
John 14:6, Jesus answered, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.”
Psalm 51:7, Cleanse me with hyssop, and I will be clean; wash me, and I will be whiter than snow.
1 John 1:9, If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness.
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