This week, I am looking forward to an opportunity to spend a day with my three year-old granddaughter while her mom and my wife spend a day in Sioux Falls. We live three hours apart so my time with her is limited at best, so an opportunity to spend an entire day with just her is something I won’t pass up. I did this first when Kyla was still in diapers two years ago. It may be my imagination, but I feel like that first day together without mom or dad or even Grandma created a special bond between us. It is such a joy to realize that Kyla knows me. She recognizes my voice as well as my face and runs to my arms, even when we don’t see each other for three months.
I receive a great amount of joy in getting to know this little tyke, but I think I get even more joy in her getting to know me. It is one thing to look at a picture of my little darling and quite another to see her face to face with her response of running into my arms and squeezing my neck.
This causes me to recognize that I honestly am more interested in Kyla getting to know me than I am in my getting to know her.
The Bible tells us that God knit us together in our mother’s womb. He knows us intimately – our strengths, weaknesses, likes and dislikes, our joys and our fears. He knows how we will respond, how we think, and what we hide so the world can’t see. He knows us really well because He made us and because, well, because He is God.
So what is gained by a relationship with God is that we get to know Him and in so doing, I believe we have potential of bringing God joy in so doing. But even so, we are the ones who benefit just like Kyla can benefit from my provision for her as a grandparent. She has no ability to care or help me, at least not at this age. So other than bringing God joy, I don’t have much to bring to the relationship.
Ephesians 1:17-18, the apostle Paul wrote
I keep asking that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the glorious Father, may give you the spirit of wisdom and revelation, so that you may know Him better. I pray that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened in order that you may know the hope to which he Has called you, (that you may know) the riches of His glorious inheritance in the saints, and (that you may know) His incomparably great power for us who believe.
Paul is praying that God will initiate growth in this relationship so that we may know God better. This means that God wants you to know Him personally. He is not satisfied that you know about God. Knowing stories in the Bible about what God has done through the ages is not His goal. Even learning how God helped your parents or grandparents through a major struggle in their lives falls far short of His desires for you. God wants you to know Him better – yes better than you know Him now.
In my world as a grandparent, Kyla gets to know me better when we spend time together. In my world as a child of God, I get to know God better the same way, by time with Him, sometimes with others in study of God’s word or in worship, sometimes in solitude reading the Bible, asking God to show me more about Himself, sometimes in prayer on my knees both pouring out my heart to Him and quietly listening to His voice speak to my soul.
In Paul’s prayer, he asked that we would know the hope He has for us in this life and the next. Paul prayed that we know the riches of His inheritance in the saints. He prayed that we would know His incomparably great power for all who believe in Him.
There is no doubt that God knows us. It is clear that God wants us to know Him. The unanswered question is how much we desire to know God.