Why It’s Hard to Love God & What You Can Do About It

7 Daily Rhythms To Help You Grow In Your Affection for God

Josh Hossler | 10/04/2022

It’s hard to love God because we are selfish. I know that sounds harsh and direct but its true. We don’t naturally seek God, we naturally seek to please ourselves. Even at times when we’re seeking God or seeking to serve others, we’re doing it out of selfish motives or a deep-seated need or desire inside of ourselves.

Add to that, we live in a time and place where we are constantly being told that what we need to do is live to please ourselves. We’re being sent messages like “Be yourself!” Or “Do what feels right/good.” Or “You do you!” They sound nice. It is important to try not to be someone we’re not, but they carry with them a subtle message that we are at the center of the universe or at the very least at the center of our universe.

The truth is, we are not, God is. It is only once we realize that and begin a relationship with Him through Jesus that you and I can truly know who we are. It’s here, in a loving, growing, life-giving relationship with God through Jesus Christ, that we learn to love God and grow in Him.

It’s crucial, but this relationship must begin with repentance of sin and saving faith in the life, death, and resurrection of Jesus. We place ourselves at the feet of Jesus where He encourages us, convicts us of sin, and gives us His grace where we change and grow.

This relationships MUST be nurtured and nourished like any other relationship. Without time together, there is NO relationship. This time with God is something Christians call Spiritual Disciplines or Personal Devotions.

These regular practices or daily rhythms are both how we grow in our affection for God and how we express our affection to God. They are the key life-source (along with regularly gathering with the body of believers) of any healthy, growing, life-giving relationship with God.

There are many, but here are the basics to get us started (adapted from “Rooted: Connect with God, the Church, and Your Purpose”):

  1. Scripture
    The Bible is the very Word of God. Through it, He equips us with all we need to learn about Him and live a life pleasing to Him. A daily rhythm of reading, meditating on, and applying God’s Word to our lives is key.
  2. Prayer
    One of the most important elements in any relationship is communication. Prayer is just that: engaging God in a conversation, sharing our hearts with Him, and spending time listening to His voice, both individually and in community.
  3. Repentance
    Jesus saves those who believe and call upon His name. Saving grace is once and for all (justification) and also a continual invitation to repent for our wrongdoings. With the help of the Holy Spirit we take inventory of our lives, humbly and honestly confess our sin, and turn away from our sin toward God in surrender. Through Jesus’ offer of forgiveness, we receive true freedom.
  4. Sacrificial Generosity
    Giving demonstrates our dependence on God. We acknowledge that all we own has been given to us by Him. In His generosity toward us, God desires the we, too, are generous and will use our resources as a tangible way to partner with Him in His word in the world, and in the lives of those around us. We are blessed to be a blessing (Genesis 12:2).
  5. Serve the Community
    We are called and equipped by the Holy Spirit to share God’s love by participating in the ministry of Jesus. He has given us agency with Him to fearlessly influence our society and the world. When we serve in the world and in His Church, we impact those around us and reveal God’s glory.
  6. Share Your Story
    The greatest gift we can ever give someone who doesn’t yet know Jesus is an introduction to Him. Sharing our life stories is the most powerful way to show the transforming power and salvation offered through Jesus Christ. When we tell our stories of transformation, we tell the story of God.
  7. Worship
    As children of God, it is important to consistently set aside time to remember what God has done, to thank Him for it, and to put Him on display as we give Him the glory. In all circumstances, we are called to practice God-centered worship.

 

A daily/weekly/regular rhythm of drawing near to God in personal devotion is the key to growing in your love for God and being immersed and convinced of His love for you. (see 1 John 4:19 and Ephesians 3:14-21)

  • Jesus did this (see Luke 5:16).
  • All the great men and women of faith of the past have done this.
  • You will do well if you do it too.

James 4:8 says, “Come near to God and he will come near to you.”

God loves you. He wants to spend time with you. If you draw near to Him, He is faithful to draw near to you.

What’s keep you from drawing near to Him? What can you do today to draw near?

Josh Hossler | Lead Pastor

Josh is the founding and Lead Pastor of Evident Church. He is passionate about helping people find their purpose and follow Jesus. Josh enjoys his family, preaching, leadership, writing, and is also is an adjunct professor of philosophy at Rochester University in Rochester Hills, MI. He and his wife Raelyn, have three daughters, AvaRae, AdaLyn, and AnaBel.

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