Be with Jesus

Freshwater Staff   -  

Genesis 1 tells us we are created for relationship – and not just any relationship, but the intimate and eternal relationship with our triune Creator: Father, Son and Holy Spirit. But in our modern world, where our presence often feels like an endangered commodity, it’s easy to get distracted from that relationship, from the voice of our Savior, from the fullness of His invitation into an abundant life.

In the second week of our series on “A New Way of Living,” Jamey Codding explored the first of our four core values of discipleship to Christ: Being with Jesus.

Jesus said, “The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy. I came that they may have life and have it abundantly” (John 10:10). We see the singular agenda of the thief – Satan – in the Garden of Eden when he convinces Adam and Eve to accept a counterfeit (the forbidden fruit) over the authentic (their intimate relationship with their Creator). Just like Adam and Eve, we are distracted by the counterfeits of our world instead of prioritizing our relationship with Jesus.

But authentic relationship is impossible without active presence, and if we’re too busy staring at our glowing screens or exhausting ourselves meeting everyone else’s expectations or prioritizing doing FOR Jesus over being WITH Jesus, we miss His voice and the fullness of His invitation.

“Walk with me. Learn from me. Become my disciple.”

This is what He wants for you – a life spent with Him. In fact, Jesus died for that exact reason: not merely because He loves you, but because He loves you so much that He wants to be with you. And for you to be with Him. For eternity, yes, but also today! Right now!

So the cross shows us that love is not passive but active – it’s generous and sacrificial. And for us, love is committing to a relationship by giving someone else what can feel like our most precious commodity: our presence. It’s love in action.

Do your actions reflect your love for Jesus? Have you accepted His invitation to reorient your life around Him, treasuring His presence above all else?

Adam and Eve willingly removed themselves from God’s presence when they hid from Him after eating the fruit. We don’t have to repeat their mistake.

In Psalm 63, David writes:

“You, God, are my God, earnestly I seek you; I thirst for you, my whole being longs for you, in a dry and parched land where there is no water.”

In this “dry and parched land” between Eden and eternity, only one thing will satisfy our thirst: a deep, abiding relationship with Jesus that develops only when we reject the counterfeits the enemy tempts us with and prioritize time with Him by giving our presence in His presence.

Reflection Questions
  1. In what ways do you relate to the story of Adam and Eve’s distraction in the Garden of Eden? How do you discern between authentic communion with God and the allure of counterfeits in your own life?
  2. How does understanding God’s unyielding desire to be with you through Jesus’ sacrifice on the cross impact your perception of His love and the depth of your relationship with Him?
  3. Reflect on the statement, “Love is not passive but active.” How does this perspective influence your understanding of God’s love for you and your response to His invitation into relationship?
  4. Are you experiencing the abundant life that Jesus promises? If not, how are you willingly separating yourself from His presence by prioritizing distractions or idols over intimate time with Him?
  5. What does it look like for you to begin the process of reorienting your life around Jesus? Are you willing to try the practice of stillness this week by pausing your activity and putting yourself into quiet and solitary spaces – TV off, phone in another room – so you can simply hear from Him?
Watch the Message
Worship Songs from April 21
  • “The Lamb, The Lion, The King”
  • “All Hail King Jesus”
  • “There Is A King”
  • “Nothing Else”
  • “Centering Prayer” (after the message)