Today’s blog continues John Ortberg’s (God is Closer Than You Think) walk through 7 spiritual pathways that draw us closer to Jesus. The next two pathways are the Relational and Serving Pathways.
2. Relational Pathway: you experience a deep sense of God’s presence when you’re involved in significant relationships. You hardly ever meet a stranger and experience key spiritual moments as God speaks to you through other people. Solitude is problematic. As Pastor Ortberg quips, you think “Solitude wouldn’t be so bad if I could just bring a bunch of other people along.” The author believes the apostle Peter was relational, since the defining moments of his life (such as his denial of Jesus) all took place in as relational context. Two dangers must be guarded against: (1) getting spread so thin that your relationships become superficial and (2) becoming dependent on others and what they think. Solitude and silence will be a stretch, but extremely helpful.
3. Serving Pathway: God’s presence seems more tangible when you are serving others. It feels natural to speak to God when engaged in service. You constantly look for God in the people you serve. Mother Teresa and Jimmy Carter exemplify this pathway. One danger is to forget that you are first and foremost God’s child, that you need to receive love as well as give it.