8 Formerly, when you did not know God, you were slaves to those who by nature are not gods. 9 But now that you know God—or rather are known by God—how is it that you are turning back to those weak and miserable forces? Do you wish to be enslaved by them all over again? 10 You are observing special days and months and seasons and years! 11 I fear for you, that somehow I have wasted my efforts on you.
God is not a formula. I remember when I was a young Christian I would freak out that if I hadn’t read my Bible for the day then my whole day would unravel. In truth I was turning God into a formula and had yet to understand the depth of relationship God wanted with me. I reasoned that being a ‘good Christian’ was ticking boxes like church attendance and Bible reading.
I cannot relate to the Galatian Church entirely, as I have never had an upbringing steeped in tradition and religion like many of these Jewish Christians would have had. But I still have found a tendency in myself to behave in a similar manner and try to break God down into a formula of observations or practices.
In truth, God is God. He is a person, the supreme and ultimate person. He is interested in me as a person, not in my ability to tick off boxes. When I seek him, listen to him, strive after his will and obey him he is joyful, as his will is to bless me and others. When I ignore him, disobey him, block my ears and heart to his voice he is grieved. No amount of Bible reading or church attendance will satisfy him. He wants me.
Lord, soften my heart so that I have a sense of our relationship. Lord, how can I draw nearer to you in relationship, where are my ears deaf to you, where is my heart hard to you?
Written by Andrew Mellor