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A Healthy Relationship with God What it Looks like and how to Achieve It
February, 2009 - Issue #52
Many seek to grow closer to God. While the roads traveled may be different, it's the final destination that matters most. Some of Santa Clarita's most respected pastors weigh in on the topic...

Choose to Live Authentically
Iraneus said, "The glory of God is a human being fully alive."

In John 10:10, Jesus says that His mission consists in His coming so that we might live life in the abundance of the living experience.

Discussion about a healthy relationship with God begins here. But there's a problem - does the American church really help people come alive in God?

Peter Scazzero brilliantly observes: "God never asked us to die to healthy desires and pleasures of life - to friendships, joy, art, music, beauty..." Why, then, do so many who claim to be Christian die to these things in favor of arrogance, criticism and separation?

My advice: Choose a community of faith that understands the difference between an authentic living-out of Christ's mission and an American selling-out to Materialistic Religiosity, Inc. ~ Pastor Jim Girdlestone of Centre Pointe Church 287-6151

Time and Commitment Equate to a Healthy Relationship
A healthy relationship with God is vividly described in John 15:1-17. In this passage, Jesus
teaches that one is in a vibrant and growing relationship with God only when their life produces the fruit of His character. According to 1 John 2:8, 16 God's chief characteristic is love. In fact, God is love.

All great relationships are achieved by a purposeful commitment of time and energy. Time is needed to learn, know and develop intimacy with another person. Time should be spent daily with God in prayer, getting direction and affirmation. Time should be spent daily reading the Bible in order to learn the character and heart of God and, most of all, time should be given to sharing and living out the message of His love and forgiveness to all we encounter. ~ Pastor Les Robinson of The Burning Bush Church 297-BUSH

Love and Give with your Whole
Heart

A healthy walk with God begins when we make a decision to not throw Him our leftovers. It's so easy to fill up our lives with so much and give God whatever is left. In John 3:16, it states that, "God so loved the world that He gave..." He gave His son for you and I, with no guarantee that we would love Him in return. That's risky. My love for Him comes out of His love for me, so I can't see it any other way than to surrender and love Him with everything I am. A healthy walk with God is not just throwing Him the scraps of our lives and barely getting a prayer out when we are in bed, half asleep. It's allowing our lives to truly express His love into the lives of others. It's inviting Him into every part of our lives, not just the areas we carve out for Him. When you live this way...that's healthy. ~ Pastor Javier Labrador of Frontline Community Church 513-0240

Believe, then Receive
The thing I love most about God is that He makes having a relationship with Him incredibly easy. All you have to do is simply believe that Jesus Christ died and was raised from the dead just for you. We do not serve a "What have you done for me lately?" God. We serve a "Just believe what I have done for you" God. If you just believe, then you can start to receive. Receive what? Receive the manifestation of a relationship with God. What does it look like? That's an easy one - and a fun one to experience. It looks like love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self control. Start experiencing the fullness of a relationship with God today. ~ Pastor Marlon Saunders of Valencia Christian Center 977-4100
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