Intentional Living: Getting Closer to God

The benefits of living intentionally in your walk with God.

4/27/20235 min read

When I was growing up on the mission field, we went to church Tuesday, Thursday, and Sunday. With all that church going, you'd think, "That was definitely enough of Jesus to get you through the week."

Not true.

It didn't take me long to realize as I entered into my teen years that simply going to church wasn't the only thing that was going to grow my faith.

This reality came to me when I arrived to boarding school my 11th grade year in a completely different country than where my parents were living. As much as I loved my new school, it also stretched my faith as it was my first time away from my parents. As homesickness settled in after the excitement faded mixed in with the difficult academic load I wasn't used to, I knew I needed encouragement and help. Thankfully, I knew where to turn and that was God's Word.

It was in those young days that I learned how vitally important it was to become intentional about my walk with God.

You see, no one ever accidently gets closer to God. You gotta be intentional about your walk with God.

Do it on purpose.

The Benefits of Living Intentionally.

Ten benefits we get when we become intentional in our walk with God is this:

  1. It helps to maintain focus and purpose in what God has called us to do.

  2. Helps us to receive daily direction with clarity.

  3. Keeps our faith renewed in the hope we have in Christ.

  4. Gives us strength in our weaknesses.

  5. Helps us to overcome strongholds in our life.

  6. Helps us to defeat anxiety and depression.

  7. We're better prepared for the blindsided seasons life brings.

  8. Inspires us to follow the guidance of the Holy Spirit.

  9. Our actions become bathed in God's love.

  10. We see life through the lens of Jesus instead of our own.

And this is to name just a few!

Let's chew on this thought:

I'm a firm believer that the #1 thing the enemy attempts to do in our life is this:

Keep Us Distracted.

So now that we've brought this to the table, a strong conviction that I feel and believe occurs in our lives is this: the more we're distracted by life itself - feeling inadequate, focusing on what we aren't capable of, maybe it's even lack of finances that keeps your faith from growing, or negative words others or yourself have said causing you to feel that you can't accomplish God's plan for your life....those are all tools of the enemy to keep us stopped in our tracks so that we cannot grow forward as God has intended us to live.

When we get the broom and start sweeping up all of those 'distractions' into the trash where they belong, the crazy amazing outcome we get when we live with intentions for God and draw closer to him is this:

The closer we get to Jesus to the pint where we begin thinking the way HE INTENDED US TO THINK AND LIVE results in an increased motivation and drive to achieve the purposes he called us to live.

And there's more!

It also enhances our overall well-being.

When we begin to grasp God's purpose for our life as we dig into his word, we are given a greater sense of purpose that leads to feeling more fulfilled and satisfied in our daily life. And studies have proven this that it also improves our mental health and reduces stress levels.

C'mon! Think about that!!

There is an epidemic in our world today of depression, anxiety, overwhelming sense of stress more than I've ever seen before. While some truly need medical assistance, I believe that many are literally because it's a tactic that the enemy has flooded our society with distracting us from living the full life God is longing for us to live. Because when you think about what HAPPENS when we live drawing closer to God PUTS A HARD STOP on the mental battles we face daily. It doesn't mean they won't try and knock on your door....but it does mean you'll have the resources in how to fight them off.

You with me?

It starts here: It's time we stop thinking we don't have time to get more intentional in our walk with God. We've been given so many resources and tools today that we really almost have no excuse to not find a way to fit Jesus into our everyday life.

BUT! Before I go any further, don't beat yourself up either because you miss a day or two, or even a week from time to time. God is NOT swinging a big stick from heaven at you any time you miss.

The key is to find those pockets in your day, intentionally, on purpose - whether it's grabbing your phone while sitting at a doctor's appointment in the waiting room, or grabbing your bible when you first wake up or go to bed at night. It's simply making the time and allow God's words of life begin to permeate your mind, heart, and soul.

Speaking raw here: we really need more of Jesus everyday in our life.

When we live life with this intention at the forefront, you'll gain a greater sense of fulfillment and accomplishment. And you know all those goals you've wanted to reach? Well, my friend, you are more likely to work towards achieving them because when we immerse ourselves into God's word, things begin to happen in our life that we only dreamed of.

To prove this, do a dive into the story of Joshua found in the book of Joshua. He preceded after Moses' death, leading the children of Israel into the promise land. While the Bible doesn't say that Joshua was afraid, the first nine verses of Joshua 1 God tells Joshua to NOT be afraid, but be strong and courageous. And knowing

that Joshua is a human just like us, it's highly likely that he was afraid of the assignment he was about to embark on which is why God so beautifully reminded him that he would never walk alone in what God was calling him to do.

"This Book of Law shall not depart from your mouth, but you shall meditate in it day and night, that you may observe to do according to all that is written in it. Have I not commanded you? Be strong and of good courage; do not be afraid, nor be dismayed, for the Lord your God is with you wherever you go." Joshua 1:8-9

Notice right before God gives him the promise that he will be with him everywhere he goes - giving him strength and courage, he focuses on the MAIN THING: His Word. He instructs Joshua to meditate on it day and night, to observe and do all that is written in it.

That is the answer. We can be told all day long that God is our strength and will never leave us, but what makes that come alive in our spirit, our hearts and our minds is God's Word and digging into it.

It's alive and well, and when his words get deep into our souls, it changes everything.

It enables us to face our battles, like Joshua, with faith, hope, and courage because God is on our side and ALWAYS goes ahead to fight out battles for us. That's his written word.

"The Lord will fight for you; you need only to be still." Exodus 14:14

I promise you that the more you jump in to the goodness of God's word, the more addicted you'll become to wanting more and more of him.

Let's dive in,

Tracee Padilla