Keeping in Touch with God

Blog June 5, 2024

“The law of the Lord is perfect, refreshing the soul. The statutes of the Lord are trustworthy, making wise the simple. The precepts of the Lord are right, giving joy to the heart. The commands of the Lord are radiant, giving light to the eyes.” Psalm 19:7­–8 (NIV)

Relationships are built on communication: conversations between two or more people. When we meet someone, we want to know what kind of person they are. We ask questions and then listen to what they have to say. They ask questions, and we answer honestly.

To foster existing relationships, we have to keep that communication flowing—regularly. There are many ways to communicate: face-to-face, on the telephone, old-fashioned letters, and of course, email, texts, social media, and probably many others. The method is less important than the fact that we are learning more about the other person and sharing more about ourselves.

Apart from the few short years that Jesus lived here in the world with us as a fellow human being, and a few lucky people who have been blessed to speak with God directly, we aren’t able to speak to Him face-to-face. That doesn’t mean, however, that communication is impossible. One way, of course, is through the whispers of His Spirit in our hearts. Another is through the wonder and beauty of His creation. The most direct communication is by His own words as given to us by those few who have heard His voice.

The Scriptures are His letters to us: love letters, letters to guide us; letters to tell us off when we’ve gone wrong—mostly letters that tell us who He is. With every word in the Bible, God is telling us what kind of person He is. He lays Himself open and shows us that He can be trusted when we do the same. He will never make fun of us, betray us, or fail to be there when we need Him. The Bible is the conversation starter— “Here I am. This is who I am. I love you and want to know who you are.”

The 2023 Global Church Member survey found that just under half of the Church members surveyed (48.7%) read the Bible every day. More than a third (35.9%) read it once a week or more. Sadly, 4.9% read it less than once a month, and 2.4% never read the Bible at all. Happily, compared to the survey done in 2018, the number of people who never read the Bible is down from 4% to 2.5%, and the number of people who read it every day is slightly up from 48% to 48.7%.

How wonderful that nearly half of the members read God’s letters to us every single day, and that another quarter read them several times a week! We need to encourage the rest to get back in touch with our Best Friend and Father. We should remind them how full His letters are of His love and concern for us. Everyone must learn how much He wants to renew the lines of communication with us.

Ellen White reminded us that consistency is key to forming and keeping good habits, including our daily devotions:

When secret prayer and reading of the Scriptures are neglected today, tomorrow they can be omitted with less remonstrance of conscience. There will be a long list of omissions, all for a single grain sown in the soil of the heart. On the other hand, every ray of light cherished will yield a harvest of light. Temptation once resisted will give power to more firmly resist the second time; every new victory gained over self will smooth the way for higher and nobler triumphs. Every victory is a seed sown to eternal life. (Ellen G. White, Counsels for the Church, 344)

You can access the full report here.

Created in collaboration with the Institute of Church Ministry.

Published by ASTR on 06/05/2024.