John 13: 34-35 says,”A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another. By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another” (NIV).
Today we continue our series on values, inspired by Craig Groeschel’s book, #Struggles. The focus today is on restoring the value of intimacy. Intimacy is defined as a close familiarity or friendship. In 2016, Craig believes our definition of friendship has evolved, but not necessarily for the good.
Pew Research found in 2014 that the average American has 338 Facebook friends, but most Americans say they have just two close friends and 25% of Americans say they have NO close friends.
We also can fall into the trap of desiring immediate affirmation, since that’s what we get many times on social media. I just posted something today about one of my favorite restaurants and got pretty excited when people started responding within a minute.
The key to intimacy is that it takes time to develop…and ideally we should be focused on cultivating intimacy with God and our spouse/family. So how can we work to restore intimacy?
- Remember what the Bible says: “and let us not neglect our meeting together, as some people do, but encourage one another” (Hebrews 10:25)
- “Be devoted to one another in love. Honor one another above yourselves.Share with the Lord’s people who are in need. Practice hospitality.”(Romans 12: 9-10)
- we have to be physically present in a conversation, not tethered to a phone, tablet or laptop (yes, we can be tethered even if it’s wireless)
- we need to be willing to go deeper in our connections with spouses, family members and those around us. There’s a difference between praying for someone and praying with them.
Remember, they will know we are Christians by our love, not our likes!
Thanks for listening!