So apologies to my Atlanta friends, but I'm going to out them on this one. I'm wondering if maybe they made the connection already; but then I probably would have heard something...
To summarize, here are the two posts in "Cliffnotes" version.
- First, I responded (The February 6 post) to a question about realizing the truth of God's presence in everyday life. Several guys my friend knows had expressed the desire to know God more fully, but they were/are frustrated at God's apparent distance so much of the time.
- Then, a few days ago (and I just realized this was actually an email exchange that I haven't blogged about until today) we exchanged some thoughts about what happens in between church, small-group gatherings, or Bible-study meetings - the ongoing challenge vis-a-vis encouraging people to follow through in terms of contact, prayer, accountability, intentionality, encouragement etc....
The following turns out to be a consistent phenomenon: Jesus followers who intentionally reach out to one-another (on a day-to-day basis) experience more in the way of affirming spiritual experience between Sundays than those who park their faith-based relationships in a quiet place when they are not at church or attending a church-related activity.
- Here's the (potentially) liberating truth: We say we want to experience the kind of relationship with God that is evident and personal each and every day... Yet we routinely fail to follow through when it comes to putting into practice the simple principles advanced by Jesus himself.... What's up with that?
- Would it not then follow that such a demonstration of love involve deliberate reaching out to one another, and more than once every week or two, at church?
- Would it not also follow that following Jesus so closely might lead to an increased apprehension of the reality of God's presence?
Do it well.
Then let's talk about Do we feel close to God...?
I'm just saying....