Jase Christensen, an all-star athlete and the top of his graduating class of Spirit University, gazed intently upon a beautiful, unassuming lady. Curiosity bested him as he watched her gently sweep her fiery red ringlets from her eyes. Who is this delicate coffee-colored queen of a woman? Yet, her presence felt familiar to him. Feeling the intensity of the stranger’s gaze, Janae looked up into what felt like wells of love and warmth. Could this man be her answered prayer?
Destiny led the two into wedded bliss years later with the coffee shop Jase and Janae first saw each other as their private wedding venue. No one expected the spunky, artsy girl to marry the epitome of a southern gentleman.
As time progressed, the fairytale changed. Success, fame, ambition, and wealth marred the Christensens lives. Those aspirations are praiseworthy accomplishments, but they make terrible gods. As Janae climbed the corporate ladder, she spent less time in a relationship with her husband.
One day, as she relaxed by the pool, Janae received divorce papers. Surprised and shaken, she asked her husband why. His answer crushed her heavy heart.
“For years, I have longed for you. I stood by you and supported your dreams and vision, even laid down my desire for kids so you could do your thing. And as you’ve grown in prominence, I realized that I didn’t know you after all. You are nothing like the woman I married–or maybe you’ve always been this way, but my love for you decided to disregard what I saw. Divorcing you isn’t what I want; I’m giving you what your lack of love expressed to me over the years. You don’t know me, and, unfortunately, I doubt I ever knew you. I’ll love you forever. Goodbye, Janae.“
Moral of the Story
This fiction story is an example of how any of us could change if we don’t remain diligent in our faith. Life’s busyness and challenges seek to consume us. Before long, our prayer life weakens, and our lack of spiritual discipline causes us to neglect fasting and consecration. This world system and the news consumes us, and everything about our spiritual identity is in question.
Thank God this isn’t our story.
How to Stay in Fellowship with God
- Prayer and God’s Word
- In the story, Jase and Janae grew distant because they never spent quality time together. People often approach God’s Word and prayer as a form of duty, failing to realize the sweet intimacy it creates with Him. We say we love Jesus, but how we spend our time and resources shows the truth. To know Him is to love Him; to love Him is to obey Him. Praying and reading His Word declares to us who He is–and unveils to us who we are as well. Read these verses.
- Doing the Work from a Place of Being
- Janae didn’t know she could live as a loving, submissive wife and a successful business executive, simultaneously. One doesn’t exclude the other. Who we are and what we do has spiritual significance. What we do does not secure our place in heaven. Our acceptance of Jesus Christ as our Lord and Savior does that. In the Bible, Martha learned that although her works were necessary (remember what James said), it didn’t replace the opportunity to bask in His presence. Read more about that here.
- Walking in the Spirit
I know this post is lengthy, but I want you fully encouraged. There’s much noise going on around us, and many things are calling for our attention. Please, I beg you, don’t let anything in this life cause you to miss God. Nothing is worth that risk.
Heavenly Father, I repent for putting everything ahead of You. I’m sorry for abandoning the secret place and focusing on strategies from the world. Forgive me for focusing on building my kingdom while neglecting to help advance Yours. I’m ready to be all in for You, and You alone, just as Jesus is. Transform me and renew my mind. Tenderize my heart and make it new, pliable, and good soil. Let fruitfulness of Your Spirit remain in my life. Let all that I am, do, think, and say be acceptable and well-pleasing in Your sight so that when it’s all said and done, I will hear You say to me, “Well done.” In the name of Jesus Christ, I pray, amen.