Do you know me? Do you really know me? Let’s see. When was the last time we spoke? When was the last time we were together? When did you last ask me a question? When did you stop wondering what I meant or how I felt and ask me? What makes me happy? What makes me angry? How have I changed? How am I the same? How am I changing? What are my goals? What moves me? What motivates me? What do I believe about ____? Fill in the blank. Do you know the answer?
Do you know me? How well do you know me?
Reading someone’s profile on Facebook or checking out their About page on their blog is not the same thing as really knowing a person. It takes time, presence, persistence and the willingness of the other to really know another. How much I’m willing to invest affects how much I will know.
Jesus Christ wants us to know him – to really KNOW HIM. He describes this as eternal life (John 17:3)
Jesus said, “I am the good shepherd; I know my sheep and my sheep know me— (John 10:14)
He also said, “My sheep listen to my voice; I know them, and they follow me”. (John 10:27)
Paul prayed for the believers in Ephesus:
16 I have not stopped giving thanks for you, remembering you in my prayers.17 I keep asking that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the glorious Father, may give you the Spirit[f] of wisdom and revelation, so that you may know him better.
(Ephesians 1:16, 17)
To the Philippian believers Paul exclaims:
“I want to know Christ—yes, to know the power of his resurrection and participation in his sufferings, becoming like him in his death…”
This knowledge of Christ is so much more than merely knowing about him. Paul wants to KNOW HIM. Nothing surpasses knowing Jesus Christ. This is what it means to really be alive! Jesus invites us to know HIM!
How do we KNOW Jesus?
- Revelation – Understand this is a Divine decision. Believe he wants to reveal himself to you. Tell him you want to know him. Ask him to reveal himself to you. Now, read the four declarations of his life from the New Testament: Matthew, Mark, Luke and John. Read them with “fresh eyes” and read them over and over. Watch him. Listen for his voice. Be ready to ask new questions.
- Presence/Observation – Follow him. He said he would never leave you or forsake you. Recognize his presence. Go with him. Watch what he is up to in the world around you. Observe what he is doing in the lives of others. What is he revealing about himself? Imagine what the disciples learned from watching Jesus. What might we learn if we follow him, if we go with him?
- Ask Questions — Why don’t we ask questions? Do we think we already know the answers? Are we afraid of the answer? When you wonder, when you don’t understand, when you want to know something, ask questions. The disciples had questions and would often ask them. When they were afraid or embarrassed to ask, Jesus would raise the questions himself. Ask lots of questions. Expect lots of answers. If prayer is a conversation with God, then ask questions.
- Listen – Jesus said “My sheep listen to my voice…and follow me.” The inability to hear Jesus should “raise some red flags”. He said one day he will say to some very religious people, “I never knew you”. We need to hear his voice. We cannot follow him if we cannot hear his voice.
- Listen for his voice in the Scriptures.
- Listen for his voice in his creation.
- Listen for his voice through others. Meet with others. Gather with others. Listen. What is he saying to you through other believers? Do you believe he could speak to you through an unbeliever?
- Listen for his “still small voice” within you. Learn to recognize it.
I want to know you and I want you to know me. But, it’s not important that you know me. It is eternally important that you know Jesus Christ. Are we putting in the time, persistence and presence with him?