"What religion are you?" I've heard many people answer this question by saying "I don't have a religion, I have a personal relationship with Jesus Christ." In fact, I'm quite certain I've said that before myself. But what on earth does that mean? One verse that is used constantly to tell people how much God loves them is John 3:16. I love how well The Message puts it.
"This is how much God loved the world: He gave his Son, his one and only Son. And this is why: so that no one need be destroyed; by believing in him, anyone can have a whole and lasting life. God didn't go to all the trouble of sending his Son merely to point an accusing finger, telling the world how bad it was. He came to help, to put the world right again. Anyone who trusts in him is acquitted; anyone who refuses to trust him has long since been under the death sentence without knowing it. And why? Because of that person's failure to believe in the one-of-a-kind Son of God when introduced to him. John 3:16-18
Insert "me" where "the world" is written. This is how much God loved "ME". That's right, it's personal. He really did it for each and every person that He created.
This became profound for me when I became a mother. Imagine choosing to give your own child up. Allowing him to suffer, and die, as Christ did for another person. I cannot even fathom it. God did that for me and for you. I guarantee there is no person on this earth who loves you enough to do what God did for us. I feel so special when I think of how much he loves me.
God is the King. He is your Father in Heaven, the Kingdom of Heaven. And you, the children of God, are all princes and princesses.
Now that you know how much he loves you, let's get to the relationship part. You may wonder how you can have a relationship with someone you can't see or touch. In any relationship there is one most important thing. Communication. That is how to have a relationship with Christ. Communicate with him. You don't even have to talk out loud. Tell him when you're sad, mad, frustrated, or excited. Ask him for things that you want and need. Tell him please and thank you. Oh, and he really loves to hear how awesome he is. Just like any person here on earth, he loves to be praised. In fact, the Bible says that praising him allows us to enter into his presence. Psalm 100:4, from The Message, says:
Enter with the password: "Thank you!"
Make yourselves at home, talking praise.
Thank him. Worship him.
When you enter into His presence everything changes. You just feel different. Better. Let's try that this weekend. Let's work on our relationship with the one who loves us most. Much like you would go on a marriage retreat with your spouse, spend the next few days on a retreat with him. Just simply communicate and see if you don't feel a million times better.
Princess Crunchy Katie