Morning thoughts on intimacy: Proximity does not equal intimacy. Nor does proximity or just spending time equal friendship.
There were people who traveled with Jesus, ate with Jesus, and considered themselves disciples or friends of Jesus. Yet those who followed Him and dined/traveled with Him many of them still did not know His heart. When you read the Gospels you will read of their doubt, unbelief, selfishness, pride, issues, and denial/betrayal of Jesus.
Only Mary showed up at the tomb of Jesus. Only John (of His male disciples/followers) showed up at His crucifixion. On the night before He was betrayed, they went to sleep, though He begged for their prayers.
The disciples could touch His flesh and still missed His heart. They walked with Him yet were not good friends to Him in His time of need.
We can spend time with people, read about their life, and still miss being intimate with them. Why? How? If our focus is inward, we can be sitting right next to someone and not know them. If we are filled with unbelief we can be close (proximity) to Jesus and still miss knowing Him. If our eyes are set on, “What can I gain from this relationship, what is in it for me? What about me? How can they bless or validate me? I think, I feel…me,” we miss out on the greatest gift-knowing God. And if we are that way with people we miss out on knowing them too. Me centered living does not launch us deep.
Even some of the relatives of Jesus did not truly know Him. Those in His community mocked Him, scorned Him, and were offended by Him. Some thought He was crazy. They were in proximity with Jesus, they were not intimate with Jesus (truly knowing and believing He was the Son of God).
When we are truly intimate with someone we see them as they are, not as we wish them to be. We listen to their heart, and what matters to them begins to matter to us. We love them deeply for who they are not what they can do for us. We know their voice, the way they move, their heart and motivations, the intonation in their speech. We can in detail tell others about parts of their inner world.
Intimacy is not a destination; it is a journey. A perpetual journey to know someone deeply, beyond the surface and simply stating surface facts or what we have read or heard.
God invites us all to know Him deeply and for ourselves. Intimacy is more than reading the Bible and attending a few services. It is a laid down life of being loved and known by God, then loving and knowing God in return. It surpasses the intimacy that can be shared between a husband and wife in covenant. And this intimacy extends on past life on earth…into eternity.
May you and I continually pursue intimacy with God and dive deeper in covenant relationships as well. May we be people of depth, moving beyond shallow or surface knowings.
I have heard His heart cry, “Do they know Me?” Let’s be pursuers of His heart as He pursues ours. God is worth knowing. How He loves us so! He is pursuing us to love us.
5 thoughts on “Proximity Is Not Intimacy (Abiding & Intimacy with God Series Part 9)”
AMEN!! Well said sister! May I share this on my facebook page?
Sure Donna you may share. God bless you.
Amiga, this is so beautifully said. Thank you, pursuing His heart. Love, love where you state, “We listen to their heart, and what matters to them begins to matter to us.”
Right on point. This filled in my thoughts on the subject of friendship and genuine relationships. May God bring Godly friends and people who lift us up as we want to d for them too.
God bless you Anna. Praying God places people in your life, all our lives who are a tremendous blessing.