A little over a week ago, Mark wrote a post on communion with God that began with these words: “I like keeping things simple.” Consider this post a further toast to simplicity in communion with God.
The Puritan John Owen (not a man known for simplicity!) wrote a book on how Christians have communion with each person of the Trinity. His section on communion with the Father is simply outstanding. Despite taking 43 pages to discuss the topic, Owen’s advice to Christians on how to commune with the Father boils down to this: God the Father loves you. Receive and rest in his love.
“Until the love of the Father be received, we have no communion with him…How, then, is the love of the Father to be received, so as to hold fellowship with him? I answer: by faith. The receiving of it is the believing of it.” (Owen, Communion with the Triune God, p. 111)
My dad recently told me of the advice of a mature believer who had walked with the Lord for decades. This man said that for years he worried and stressed over whether his love for God was deep enough or great enough. But after lengthy struggles with the question, he finally gave up and began to meditate on much God loved him…and his own love for God followed.
Christian, God loves you. God. Loves. You. Receive his love by simply believing it! Ask for the Spirit to pour out the love of God in your heart (Romans 5:5 – and note: that’s God’s love for you poured into our hearts through the Spirit). Think of the best example of human love you’ve ever received, multiply and magnify it over and over, and realize: that is how our heavenly Father loves you. Consider these words from J.I. Packer:
“God has voluntarily bound up his own final happiness with [ours]…God’s happiness will not be complete till all his beloved ones are finally out of trouble…God saves, not only for his glory, but also for his gladness.” (Knowing God, p. 125)
Keep your communion with the Father simple: meditate and delight in the fact that he loves you. Your own love for God will follow.
“See what kind of love the Father has given to us, that we should be called children of God; and so we are!” (1 John 3:1)