Partnering means different things to different people. To some it brings dread because it implies continual sacrifice. For others it brings hope - hope that they are not alone, that there are others to join them on life’s journey.
1 John 1:3-4(NKJV)
that which we have seen and heard we declare to you, that you also may have fellowship with us; and truly our fellowship is with the Father and with His Son Jesus Christ. And these things we write to you that your joy may be full.
The Greek word translated fellowship can also be translated partnership and is an intimate fellowship or partnership. Therefore the apostle John urges us to have a partnership with God and His Son Jesus, and that it will result in fullness of joy.
God wants us to be in partnership or intimate fellowship with Him and His Son Jesus Christ! The amazing thing about this partnership is that it was instigated by God, not man. In other words, not by you or I! He was the One who called us - who whispered our names even before we were born. His divine purpose has always been this intimate knowledge of Him.
And this is eternal life, that they may know You, the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom You have sent.
The Greek word ‘know’ means to know intimately and to understand fully.
I don’t know about you but this has been a journey for me. As I surrendered my life to the Lordship of Jesus Christ I did not have an immediate partnering with God. I learnt the ropes of obedience as I realised that obedience is Jesus’ love language, but I had to grow in the knowledge of God as an intimate Father!
My journey has been up and down, sometimes with the incredible realisation of God’s goodness towards me, His loving kindness and richness and Love. At other times barely hanging onto the Faith that He really has me in His hands and that He won’t ever let me go.
In times of doubt the one thing I have learnt to do is to read the Word, specifically what God says about Himself. Or even what the prophets and those like Jesus who know Him so intimately, said about Him. I cling to those words of His mercy, goodness, slowness to anger, richness in love, faithfulness etc as it is mine through His Son Jesus Christ. I meditate on it and I remind myself that in the Garden of Eden, in a world before sin, He walked with His people every day. They were safe with Him and only when sin and shame entered did they start hiding - not Him. I remind myself not to hide but I train myself to run TO Him, knowing that Jesus dealt with my sin and shame on the cross.
Then there is the joy factor of 1 John 1 v 4. Our joy can be full! We can overflow with joy as we fellowship and partner with God and His Son. This is part of the salvation package, thrown in with all the other good stuff like grace, love, mercy, kindness, longsuffering... If the fruits of the Spirit of God are all good, please remember that it is the Spirit of God and therefore He has all these attributes.
Remind yourself that your first partnering is always with God and His Son. Your first partnering is not with your husband, ministry, children, friends, family or work. Those partnerships can thrive and be healthy only as we first touch God (1John 1 v 3). Other partnerships flow directly from this first and foremost partnership - our partnership with God.
Enjoy the journey of growing more and more intimate with God and His Son. He is good and will do you good.
Liesl Mare is a regular contributor at Women of Reverence.
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