What do you think are the biggest barriers to staying connected to God? Pursuing him?
In Biblical times?
In the culture of today?
While times have certainly changed, distractions have not. Work and busyness, a lack of discipline, selfishness, rules & religion vs. true relationship with God all existed in ancient days asthey do today. So, why do some people seem to be able to stay connected to God? I believe it boils down to an action verb.....Pursue.
a. To follow and try to capture (someone or something) for usually a long distance or time.
b. To strive to gain or accomplish something.
If you were pursuing someone or something on earth, what would you do? In other words, what would be the evidence that you are pursuing? You'd most likely research, spend time focused on the person or thing. Your thoughts would be consumed with catching.
A Self- Assessment (with no judgement):
What are you allowing to keep you distracted from pursuing a closer relationship with God? (circle all that apply)
· TV, Social media/ Netflix
· A hobby
· Laziness/lack of discipline
· Not sure how to get started
· Other: _________________
Technology and Social Media:
In today’s culture, we are more technologically connected than ever before but yet we are more disconnected. “Who” you are online can be created, controlled and manipulated.
Social media and technology are tools God can use for His Glory or tactics Satan will manipulate to destroy your true identity.
How has social media, technology and the culture of today made it easier for you to connect to God?
How has it made it harder to stay connected to God?
Social media makes it easy for one to hide not ever really being who God created you to be. Consider the following as you think about your own activity on social media.
· Persona vs. the real person
o Why do you post what you post? What reaction are you looking for?
· Façade vs. true identity
o What image are you trying to convey about yourself? About God and who he created you to be?
· Being liked/approved/validated by the world vs. pursuing relationship with the true King who already loves, approves and has validated you by the blood of the Lamb!
o What approval or validation are you looking for from people?
o What is the eternal significance you are seeking?
Personal reflection: Look at your social media profiles and most recent posts. What would someone deduce was important to you?
When you consider your day, week, month, do your activities and schedule demonstrate that the pursuit of God is your top priority? Why or why not?
Identity: The heart of the matter
When we know who we are, and whose we are, our thoughts, motives and actions shift to staying close to Him and pleasing Him. When you believe you are loved by God and that nothing you do can change that, you desire to live differently.
Pursuing and connecting with God is not about a formula. It’s about fellowship.
Ways I create fellowship with Him………
Spend time with Him. Pray (conversation w/God). Scripture. Journal. Listen. Worship.
How do you think about pursuing Him?
With conviction? Out of duty? As a “should do?”
With anticipation? Out of true desire? As a wonderful privilege?
Frame your pursuit of Him in positive ways…….
· You have the opportunity to pray to the God of the Universe and you have his undivided attention! Pray for Godly desires.
· You have the ability to create your own spare time.
· You have the will power to protect your spare time.
· You have to choice to use your time wisely.
Some questions to consider as you seek to truly connect with God and others:
1. Is your current schedule/routine and your habits bringing you closer to God or taking further away from him? Yes No
2. Is what you’re posting online and in person, presenting your identity in Christ & who God created you to be? Yes No
3. Is what you’re posting online and how you show up in person, pointing others to who God is? Helping others? Yes No
4. What is the motive of your post, action or comment? To bring God glory or to validate self, others or the world?
5. As you pray over this post, what’s the next step God is asking you to take to pursue a more intimate relationship with him?
9 “As the Father has loved me, so have I loved you. Now remain in my love. 10 If you keep my commands, you will remain in my love, just as I have kept my Father’s commands and remain in his love. 11 I have told you this so that my joy may be in you and that your joy may be complete. 12 My command is this: Love each other as I have loved you. John 15:9-12
"I love all who love me. Those who search will surely find me.” Proverbs 8:17NLT