Monday, January 27, 2020

THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN KNOWING ABOUT AND KNOWING

“Now this is eternal life: that they know You, the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom You have sent.”  (John 17:3 NIV)

The church does not lack people who know about Scripture.  It does not lack good and faithful people who know the rules and try to follow them.  The church lacks sufficient numbers of believers who know first-hand the love of God.

There is a long distance between knowing about someone, and knowing them.  I know about many; I know few.  This principle is infinitely true with God.  Churches are places where we learn about God.  But what about knowing God and receiving God's abundant healing love?  It is exactly here where what we are doing is too often not working.

The common Christian experience is like a person who is invited to a buffet table the length of a football field.  Most invitees start on the end with the snacks and finger food, and they seem to get full and stop before experiencing the full spread. Many get to the salad bar, but few move on to the most nutritious and delicious foods.

Until many of God's faithful come to know God and be filled to overflowing with God's healing love, churches will decline and decay.  If a full measure of God's love radiates from us, nothing can contain our explosive impact upon the world.  If we fail to catch something spiritually contagious and joy-filled, nothing can stop our fall.

-- Larry Malone in “UM Men's Magazine, Spring 2004”


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