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When you tell God you want to be more like Jesus, watch out! That’s one prayer God loves to answer in spades. Before you know it, you’ll be roaming the country a homeless, penniless outcast, just like Jesus was during his ministry years.

But you’ll have God’s Spirit powerfully with you. No amount of wealth can rival having God’s Spirit powerfully with you.

It’s better to be a penniless follower of Jesus than someone with excessive funds who doesn’t know God. I say this from personal experience but also from observation. The most spiritually miserable and misdirected people I’ve ever met are not poverty-stricken but those with more money than they need. Money is not a blessing when it exceeds your needs. Money beyond your needs becomes a burden, a temptation, and a curse, driving a wedge between you and God.

Becoming more like Jesus (that is, learning to make the choices he made and following his lead in everything we do) should be our lifetime goal as his followers. We’re not to model ourselves after movie stars or sports heroes or superheroes or anyone else, including our favourite relative, friend, or pastor. We follow the lead of no-one but Jesus; that’s what it means to be his follower.

You grow into the role of being a follower of Jesus. You’re not reborn and automatically become like Jesus. It’s a process that unfolds over time. It’s first and foremost a spiritual education, bearing in mind that Jesus was as much a teacher as he was the Messiah, and that the whole purpose of his ministry work was to teach people about the Kingdom and how to live in it. God, through his Holy Spirit, taught Jesus so that Jesus could teach his disciples, who in turn taught his other followers, who in turn then taught yet other followers, and so on and so on, all the way down to blogs like this one today.

As followers of Jesus, we keep on learning to be more like Jesus right up to our last breath as humans. Even Jesus himself was learning up until his crucifixion (remember the Garden of Gethsemane). I don’t think we ever reach the point where we can say: “Well, I’m exactly like Jesus now, so I can stop learning”. Every day, we learn from God through his Spirit, but also from scripture (especially the Gospels), and from making mistakes.

Maybe because I make so many of them as a former atheist who wasn’t “raised in the faith”, mistakes tend to be my dominant learning mode. We learn best by mistakes, as the adage goes, and they also keep us humble, as my grandmother used to say, so mistakes do have a positive aspect if used correctly. But mistakes can also hurt you and leave you troubled and confused for a time. And they can ultimately turn you against God.

So it’s critically important when we fail our tests or fall to temptation that we run to God as soon and as quickly as possible. Our instinct will be to run the other way to avoid God and lick our wounds in private, but we need to run to God, not try to hide from him. Scripture says that God will wipe away all our tears; it doesn’t say that we won’t cry or not give ourselves reason to cry; it says God will wipe away all our tears, and that includes tears that result from self-inflicted wounds from failed tests and temptations or downright stupidity.

I have done both – cried and run away from God and cried and run to God, and beyond a shadow of a doubt it was far, far better to run to God for healing than to try to avoid him and fix things in some other way. God’s healing is miraculous and therefore instantaneous and perfect, whereas anything I did to try to rectify my mistakes only made things worse. I laugh as I write this, because with the passage of time, I tend only to remember my stupidity rather than the pain my stupidity caused me. That shows the perfection of God’s healing, that the pain is gone even in remembrance. There’s no rankling or regrets or self-loathing. I only think: “Well, that was stupid of me. Won’t do that again”, and I move on.

We need to move on after we’ve made mistakes, especially ones that involve failed tests and temptations. The temptation will be to wallow in self-pity or self-hatred, to beat our breasts publicly, or even to think we’ll never regain our spiritual footing so we might as well just give up. Those are all temptations in themselves and they come straight from the devil. Don’t fall for them. God wants you standing firmly on your feet and looking up to him, not wallowing in self-pity and looking down.

Becoming more like Jesus is a lifetime pursuit. We shouldn’t get angry or impatient with ourselves if we occasionally (or more frequently) make choices that Jesus didn’t make and suffer the consequences for it. We should instead learn from our mistakes and use them as cautionary tales to teach others. We should never wallow in our mistakes or in self-pity; we should always run to God and God only for healing.


Even as we continue to learn about the Kingdom ourselves, we can still teach others. Our knowledge will never be perfect while we’re here on Earth, and it doesn’t need to be. God doesn’t expect us to be perfect and in fact hasn’t enabled us to be perfect until we get Home. What he does expect of us is to remain actively willing to become more like Jesus. That means not only praying to be more like Jesus, but accepting the reality of actually being more like Jesus, which of necessity is going to involve being itinerant, penniless, and at odds with mainstream society, including mainstream Christianity.

When this happens, embrace the changes in your circumstances, don’t fight them. If God entrusts you with poverty, he has given you a very great gift and blessing. Don’t reject it. The more Jesus came into his power in the Kingdom, the poorer and more outcast he became in the world. The same will happen to his followers. Having poverty thrust on you is a sign that you’re becoming more and more like Jesus. It is reason to celebrate, not to mourn; it is a reason to double down on your commitment to God and the Kingdom, not cause to neglect the Kingdom to pursue money-making ventures in the world.

All prophets throughout the ages have had poverty thrust on them, and yet God still provided for them: “Seek ye first the Kingdom of God and his righteousness, and everything you need will be given to you”. In becoming more like Jesus, there’s no need to fear poverty and rejection by mainstream society: these things should instead be celebrated as a milestone achieved. Paul says that the values of the Kingdom are foolishness to the world. If God saw fit for Jesus to be penniless, itinerant and outcast during his ministry years, we should expect to be the same.

It is a very great privilege to be given the grace to be more like Jesus. Wherever that leads you, embrace it.


There is only one church under God, with only one high priest – Jesus.

The only way to enter God’s church is through the door of spiritual rebirth, which is determined by God, not by people. You are not born into God’s church; you are reborn into it.

There are no denominations within God’s church. There is just the one church and the one church only. Jesus, through his ministry work, showed us the Way, the Truth and the Life. No-one comes to the Father except through Jesus, and only at a time and place of God’s choosing. Only those who have come to the Father and live in his grace are in his church.

Christianity, as it manifests today, is nearly a complete fraud. All denominational churches are fraudulent, as are people who call themselves Christians who are not reborn. The worst thing to happen to the early church was not that it was persecuted, but that it became a state religion under Constantine. In becoming a state religion, Christianity was then forced on people as a mass cultural movement rather than a genuine spiritual submission to God. Much was changed in order to make Jesus’ teachings palatable to the superstitious pagan masses (i.e., demon worshipers). Much was also changed in order to make Christianity a means to control the masses.

When I was an atheist, mass Christianity used to make my skin crawl. It still does. Jesus I love; God I love; scripture I love; but mass Christianity leaves me cold. I feel the same way when I enter a building that calls itself a “church”, with people sitting in rows before the altar like they’re expecting a performance. When did gathering to worship God become a performance? Jesus wasn’t performing when he taught in synagogues; he was teaching. People weren’t there to watch him perform; they were learning. God’s church is a spiritual realm intended for worship and prayer and teaching and learning. No performance is required.

God’s church is wherever and whenever God’s people are. You don’t have to enter into a building or even gather with others to be in church, because those who are genuinely in God’s church are always in it. There is never a time when they’re not in church

The only reason to enter into a church building these days is to use it as a personal resource or to call genuine believers out of it.


For the first three and a half years of my rebirth, I attended Catholic churches religiously (in every sense of the term). I was front row center at mass at least twice a day. The last church I attended I was there so often, the priest gave me a key so I could come and go as I pleased. It was there, in that building, that God showed me the truth of what was being worshiped.

Catholicism is defined by Catholics as the one true church, with the popes tracing their successional lineage as heads of the church all the way back to Peter. They may well trace their lineage to Peter, but the Catholic church is anything but the true one. The day I turned 40, three and a half years after my conversion from atheism, I got down on my face in tears and asked God to take out of my life everything that was keeping me from doing his holy will. I was steeped in Catholic superstition at the time and had lost my former joy. I felt more and more “off”, and rather than growing in my faith, I was stuck spinning my spiritual wheels.

At the same time, I was a model Catholic – always at mass, always clutching a rosary, always reciting whatever set phrases (“prayers”) the priest or pope instructed me to recite. Whatever place I lived in looked like a shrine, with the walls plastered with crucifixes, prayer cards, and pictures of the pope. My candles were blessed by a priest, as was my oil, my salt, and even my cat. I thought I was doing everything I possibly could to serve the church (including considering becoming a nun), and yet I felt a growing hollowness and coldness inside me that I knew was wrong.  It was that odd coldness in particular that drove me to my knees and then down on my face in tears, begging God to help me regain the love I’d had in the days and months following my rebirth. In hindsight, I believe this is the first time I’d genuinely prayed to God since I was reborn.

God answers all heartfelt prayers, but he does so in his timing, not ours. Nine days later, after early Sunday mass, God answered my birthday prayer. I was sitting alone in the church, as was my habit after mass. I loved the stillness and the quiet and the smell of the just-extinguished candles, which reminded me of birthday cake. It was then, as I sat alone in silent reverie in what I thought of as “God’s house”, that God showed me precisely what kind of a building I was in.

It was either as if something fell away from my eyes or was added to my vision, but I suddenly saw the building as a pagan temple. The statues of saints were pagan idols, the worst of which was the massive statue of a dead Jesus hanging over the altar. I could not remain in that place another second. I had to get out.

And so I left and never went back. That was nearly 20 years ago. At the “shrine” where I was living at the time, I tore all the Catholic paraphernalia off the walls and tables and threw them into boxes, which I then shoved into a cubby hole and later placed at the curb for garbage collection. All I had left after the purge was a pristine white-covered King James Bible that I hadn’t even cracked the spine on. I’d bought it a few months after my rebirth, but I hadn’t read it. The day I left Catholicism was the day I started to read the Old Testament for the first time. The New Testament I’d read cover to cover in the days following my rebirth, but the Old Testament I hadn’t touched. In finally reading the Old Testament word for word (rather than as cherry-picked verses, as Catholicism does), I found in it clear and indisputable evidence that Catholicism was a redo of everything gone wrong with Judaism.


Catholicism is not alone in thinking it’s the one true church. Every denomination labours under the same delusion. Every denomination espouses a creed or a list of beliefs that adherents must sign off on in joining the congregation. Tellingly, being genuinely born-again is not one of those must-have beliefs.

After leaving Catholicism, I sporadically attended a broad range of Protestant churches, finding in each of them the same superficiality I’d found in Catholicism. These were not genuine believers sitting before the altar. These were not my spiritual brothers and sisters. Most of them were either “raised in the faith” and so were there out of obligation or were attending the services as a social event.

But every now and then I’d stumble across someone who, like me, was looking for their brothers and sisters among the pretenders. That was a happy day for us, to find each other, like finding a gold nugget in the river sludge.

I cannot imagine pretending to love God and pretending to follow Jesus, and being content with that state of being. I cannot imagine just going through the motions of ritual observance year after year, thinking that’s all there is to worshiping God and being a Christian. The worst thing ever to happen to Christianity was for it to be declared a state religion. When the persecution ended, the fraud began.

To sum up:

  • There is only One True Church: God’s church.
  • You become a member of God’s church through genuine spiritual rebirth.
  • This is how it was at the beginning, and this is how it is still.
  • All denominational churches are fraudulent. At best, they’re social clubs; at worst, they’re money-making schemes, preying on the gullible.

I do not recommend joining denominational churches, but you can use them as a resource tool. Jesus used synagogues, and in so doing modeled for us that we can do the same. Don’t hesitate to use denominational churches for your needs. It’s one of the few reasons why God permits them to still exist – as a resource for his children in his One True Church.


Everything good in your life comes from God.

It might come THROUGH people or nature or something else, but it originates in God.

God and God alone is the source of all goodness.

I mention this, because people (including born-again believers) sometimes have a tendency to take credit for good things when they happen, or to attribute good things to other people or to anything other than God. We must be careful not to do that. We must be careful always to thank God for blessings, understanding that he’s behind all of them.

God doesn’t get offended when we misdirect our thank-you’s, but we miss out on the blessings that come with thanking him. When you leave God out of the thank-you equation, you lose. Go ahead and thank people, by all means (lest they get hurt or offended), but don’t forget to thank God.


Bad habits that keep you from being on target with God’s will are not something that you can break on your own or in isolation (that is, one at a time). For instance, wanting to quit smoking without understanding why you smoke in the first place will only lead to your failure. I have spoken with dozens of people (including Christians) over the past few years who are desperate to quit smoking but find they simply cannot do it. Their desire to inhale nicotine-laced smoke is stronger than their desire to quit.

Addictions are sensory- and memory-based. Even the thought of smoking gives addicted smokers the same sensation as actual inhalation of nicotine smoke. In fact, for some addicts, thinking about the addicted behavior is more satisfying than actually doing it. That’s because the thought of the desired addicted behavior releases the same chemical in the addict’s brain (dopamine) as is released during the the execution of the addicted behavior. Which is also why it’s so difficult to quit addictions like smoking, as you’re fighting not only the physical desire for nicotine, but also the strong memory of how it satisfies you, which is accompanied by a dopamine rush. Such a powerful force cannot be overcome just by wanting it to be overcome.

The day I was born-again, I went from drinking 6 to 8 drinks a day to drinking none. I had no desire to drink alcohol in the months following my rebirth. I did start to drink again later, but only sparingly and socially (one drink a few times a week). And then I stopped altogether.

I mention this because I’d been an alcoholic since I was a teenager. I’d been drinking heavily almost daily for 20 years before I was reborn. I never thought about quitting and would likely still be drinking heavily had I not turned to God. I’m not against alcohol per se (Jesus drank socially, and his first public miracle was turning water into wine), I’m just against alcohol for me.

But I know I could never have quit on my own or through any kind of a program or buddy/mentor system. Alcohol was my “medicine” that I legitimately thought I had the right to take. It was my default when things got stressful or hectic, or when I was feeling down or in the mood for a party. I used any excuse to drink, so that over the years nearly every activity I did was memory-stamped with alcohol and the initial euphoria it induced in me.

Such a pervasive addiction would have been almost impossible for me to escape on my own. I’m strong-willed, but not that strong-willed. I thank God that he sprang me from alcohol addiction not because I asked him to, but because whatever alcohol gave me, God then gave me instead. The reliance on alcohol was turned into a reliance on God, so that whenever I felt stressed or depressed, I turned to God. If I was unhappy with something, I turned to God. God rather than alcohol became my default, but this change I could not have arranged on my own. It came through submission to God and only through submission to God and was ultimately effected by God, not by me. First came my submission to God, then came my healing from addiction.

There is no other way to be fully healed from addiction than through divine intervention (in other words, a miracle). But it first requires full submission to God. Prayer – however fervent – without full submission to God will not stop the addiction.


Do you have an addiction that you’re trying to quit? Stop thinking about your efforts to overcome it and focus instead on submitting yourself, body and soul, to God. The more you submit to God, the less power your addiction has over you. The more you submit to God, the more dependent you become on him and the more you will turn to him for all your needs rather than to drugs or to people. Fully submitting yourself to God will not only solve all your problems, it will give you the best ongoing high you’ve ever had, without any hangover or other nasty withdrawal symptoms.

If you have only one addiction during the rest of your time on Earth, let it be to God. We’re made to be addicted to him. Let your dopamine rush come from thinking about God and spending time with God. Let it come from just thinking about spending time with God. Let your focus be on him and him only, and he will get rid of everything that doesn’t belong in your life. You won’t have to do a thing. That’s a scriptural guarantee:

“Seek ye first the Kingdom of God and his righteousness,

and everything you need will be given to you.”


All good things come from God. He is the originator and source of all goodness. Goodness can come through people and things, yes, but it originates in God. He sets it in motion. He sends it to you.

May your addiction be only and always to God.


Judas Iscariot was one heck of a preacher. He was excellent at his missionary job, which is why none of the other disciples suspected him of betraying Jesus. At the very end, he was, of course, outright in his betrayal, but earlier on he was as swept up in the Jesus wave as the other followers. He thought he believed in Jesus, he thought he felt the same about the mission as all the other disciples. It was only toward the end of the three years working with Jesus that his beliefs and feelings changed, and he, the arch-deceiver, began to see Jesus as the deceiver. But Judas carefully hid his doubts, as deceivers do, and doubled down on his enthusiasm in case anyone should suspect his plans.

There are many followers of Judas Iscariot in the Christian preacher community, especially on YouTube. I know preachers who are alcoholics, preachers who are on antidepressants, preachers who just consider preaching a way to make a living and to be looked after in retirement. These are all modern-day Judases, but I doubt that any of them would see themselves as such. They come across as ultra-sincere and committed to Jesus. Sometimes they’re so good at preaching their sincerity, they start to believe it themselves. It’s only when they step away from the pulpit that their doubts creep in.

By God’s Spirit, you can discern the Judases among us. They love to preach, because while they’re preaching, they feel real. The common impression is that Judas Iscariot was bad or at best mediocre at what he did. But he was good at preaching, one of the best among the disciples. His stellar performance as a preacher and subsequent presumed commitment to the mission is what led to his being entrusted with the group’s finances. Scripture tells us that he stole from the funds the disciples held in common. “But surely someone who preaches like that can’t be dishonest!?!”

Televangelists and their latest incarnation, the YouTube prophets, are all Judases. I do not apologize for making that generalization, as I have yet to come across any televangelist or anyone who self-promotes on YouTube who is not a Judas Iscariot-level false prophet. If you want to work on and practice your skill of discernment, pick any televangelist or self-promoting prophet on YouTube and see if you can find their Judas streak. As I said, they all have one. Sometimes it’s blatant, but other times it takes a few minutes to find.

There are two things they all have in common, these followers of Judas. The first is that they’re glib preachers, smooth with their words. Paul, by his own confession, stumbled over his, which is one of the reasons why he relied so heavily on his letters to get the message out. God would have had a hand in Paul’s lack of spoken eloquence, just as he has a hand in the surfeit of spoken eloquence of Judas’s followers.

The second thing that Judas preachers all have in common is their focus on money. They’ll preach for free, but they’ll solicit donations, or they’ll preach for a salary. Money will always be part and parcel of preaching the Gospel for them, as it was for Judas. They worship mammon, so preaching the Word is just a means to an end (the end being making money). Genuine followers of Jesus never accept a penny for preaching the Word. They’ll graciously and with gratitude accept any donations that are offered free-willingly, but they’ll never solicit them. That is one of the key ways to discern a follower of Jesus from a follower of Judas. God will permit the tares to grow among the wheat until Judgement Day, so it’s up to us to discern who’s a tare and who’s wheat, lest we, too, be deceived.

I know a few Judas preachers personally, and it’s difficult at times for me to keep quiet about them, but God wants me to let them be. He well knows who they are and he tells me that even the Judases have a role to play in bringing believers to the Kingdom. God uses everyone and everything to draw his people ever closer to him. Jesus knew about Judas, but he let him continue to preach to the end. He let him continue because Judas had a role to play in the redemption process, which he played willingly.

We’re not to expose the Judases among us, but rather to discern who they are and let them be. There’s nothing to be gained in exposing them, nothing to be gained in confronting them, and nothing to be gained in trying to stop them from preaching. They are an earned reward for people who prefer to have their ears tickled with smooth words.

God lets those people be, too.

He doesn’t force himself on anyone.


One of the few things we know for sure about Jesus is that he never sinned during his time on Earth. He came into the world sinless and he left it sinless. Had he not be entirely sinless, he wouldn’t have been able to pay the sin debt owed by Adam. But the debt’s been paid; the kingdom’s come; and Jesus is at the right hand of God, where he belongs.

But Jesus being sinless doesn’t mean that Jesus always wanted to do what God wanted him to do. What most Christians don’t consider (and they should consider it, they really, really should) is that while Jesus was always obedient to God, he didn’t always want to be. Sometimes he dragged his heels, sometimes he jumped the gun, and sometimes he tried to negotiate his way around it.

This is important, that we acknowledge that Jesus didn’t always want to do what God was asking him to do but that he did it anyway. Because if we’re honest with ourselves, we’ll admit that we don’t always want to do what God is asking us to do. All of us occasionally try to find a way around God’s will or a justification for not doing it. All of us do this, and if you say you don’t, you’re lying to yourself.

We’re constantly being tested to see whether we want what God is offering or what the world is offering. But God is not going to permit us to be tempted when we’re all fired up after a revival meeting; no, he’s going to test us after we’ve been fasting for 40 days and nights in the wilderness. He wants to see the real us, not the one we claim to be with our Christian friends. He wants to see how we respond not when we’re at the top of our game, but when we’re scraping the bottom of the barrel; when we’re tired and cranky; when we’ve spent the past 3 weeks sleeping on the airport floor: when we’re hungry and thirsty and exhausted and lost and people are being downright nasty to us. That’s when we’ll be tested. That’s when we’ll be pressed to do God’s will against every nerve and bone in our body.

This is where many people fall. They fail the test and then decide not to get back up again. But if we understand that Jesus himself didn’t always want to do what God tasked him to do (that is, that he didn’t always want to choose to forgive, that he didn’t always want to turn the other cheek, that he didn’t always want to love his enemies, etc.), it makes it easier for us to be obedient through gritted teeth. Because you wanna bet that Jesus was gritting his teeth on many an occasion when he chose to do God’s will. He wasn’t always doing it with a smile on his face. No-one on Earth always does God’s will with a smile on their face. It’s not possible to do that.

But it is possible to be obedient to God while gritting your teeth or grumbling under your breath. God’s not asking you to give up who you are or to stop being authentically you; he’s just inviting you to choose his way rather than the world’s way. That’s what it means to be obedient to God, to do God’s will, and it can be done through gritted teeth and while grumbling.

Or you can choose not to do God’s will, and fail the test. When that happens, you need to acknowledge your failure and move on. Don’t grovel in your failure; learn from it. And you’d might as well learn from it, because you’re going to be tested again on that exact same point. You don’t get out of something by failing it, not in God’s economy: You get a re-do when you least expect it.

Case in point: Several weeks ago, I had a run-in with a woman at a bus shelter in Halifax. She was smoking, pointedly ignoring all the “NO SMOKING” signs painted around the shelter’s interior. I politely asked her to stop smoking, but she ignored me. I asked her again, she still ignored me, and that’s when things took a turn for the worse. It’s also when I should have backed off and let God deal with her, but I wasn’t in the mood to do that on that particular day. So I locked horns with the woman.

I won’t bore you with the details, but let’s just say it got nasty. Real nasty. It almost came to physical blows, but God sent us off in different directions before that could happen.

A few weeks later, the night before I left Halifax, I was on a bus, and who should get on but the woman I’d locked horns with. She sat down next to me, but she didn’t recognize me at first. She’d had a problem finding her monthly bus pass when she was boarding the bus, so I asked her if she wanted mine, as I was leaving town the next day and wouldn’t need it anymore. She thanked me and said no, she had a pass already, she just needed to find it at the bottom of her purse. She dug through her bag for a minute and triumphantly flashed her pass at me and the bus driver. Then she thanked me again for my offer and complimented me on my coat.

It was at that point that I noticed a glimmer of recognition in her eyes, but not clear recognition. I could tell that she was trying to place me from somewhere, but she wasn’t sure where. So we chatted for a few minutes about the weather turning cold and about my upcoming trip, and then she gathered her things together to get off the bus. That, I think, is when the penny dropped for her and she remembered where she knew me from. But instead of lighting into me (which she could easily have done), she instead stared me straight in the face and wished me a good night and safe travels. I returned her well wishes, and we nodded and smiled good-bye to each other as if we were old friends.

I think I can say with confidence that I passed the re-do test, as did she. God’s timing is perfect. The funny thing is, during our brief bus trip together, the woman reminded me so much of me. We had similar mannerisms and ways of expressing ourselves, and it wouldn’t surprise me if she were a Christian, though not necessarily a born-again one. I have a feeling I’ll see her again someday, and we’ll have a good laugh over our bus shelter battle. God’s sense of humor, like his timing, is always perfect.

But WE are not perfect, and neither was Jesus during his time on Earth. That means we sometimes have to do God’s will through gritted teeth and while grumbling under our breath. That means we sometimes get mad at God. He’s our Dad, after all. (Surely you’ve been angry with your earthly father!) God would rather that you be real with him than fake it, and anger is a reasonable response to being asked to do something you don’t want to do.

Choosing God’s way was something Jesus always did, though not always with a smile on his face. God doesn’t expect us to do what even Jesus couldn’t do. What he does expect us to do is to grumble and to fail on occasion; and when we do fail, to get back on the horse ASAP. Obedience to God doesn’t require a smiling face, just a grudging “yes” when we’d sometimes rather say “no”.

A simple “yes” will do it.

God will do all the rest.


To praise God means to love him; to love God means to praise him.

There is no praise without love and no love without praise.

The two are the same.

You don’t have stand with your arms outstretched and waving back and forth to praise God. You don’t even have to look to the heavens.

You just do the same things with God as you do with anyone else you love.

You spend time with him. That’s praising him.

You run to him with your problems. That’s praising him.

You run to him with your joys. That’s praising him.

You share your every thought with him and listen quietly to his. That’s praising him.

Even if you don’t initially agree with him, you always let God take the lead. That’s praising him.

Invite him to go for a walk with you. Invite him to sit with you in your favourite hidey-hole. Sing songs with him. My favorite duet with God is the BeeGees’ “How Deep Is Your Love?”

Here are my lines:

“I believe in you, you know the door to my very soul

You’re the light in my deepest darkest hour

You’re my savior when I fall”

Here are God’s lines:

“And you may not think I care for you, when you know down inside that I really do

And it’s me you need to show how deep is your love….”

God, as scripture tells us, is a jealous God. He wants us all to himself. He wants us so much to himself that he made it the first and greatest Commandment that we are to give our everything to him and to him only. But he knows we get distracted. He knows sometimes we forget that he’s right there with us, he can be so quiet. He never butts in (unless we invite him to). He lets us open ourselves to him and invite him in, and then he gladly comes. When we invite him in permanently, he never leaves. He told us “I will never leave you nor forsake you”, I will never desert you; I will never betray you.

God will only leave if we want him to.

May you never want God to leave.


To love God is to praise him. He knows whether or not we love him (he knows everything about us), but he needs us to show it, too. He needs us to show him that we love him. You show God you love him by doing everything he advises you to do, like Jesus did during his time on Earth.

It’s the little things that make a love great, not the grand gestures (though they have their place), the little things, especially and foremost spending quiet time together enjoying each other’s company. You don’t even have to say anything when you’re with God, just let his love wash over you and yours over him. That’s praise and the highest form of worship. It’s what Jesus was talking about when he said God was looking for people to worship him in Spirit and in Truth: for people to love God for no other reason than that they love him. Not out of obligation or a sense of duty, but as a state of being, like being in love.

To love God is to praise him; to praise God is to love him. The two are the same.

Praise without love is an empty thing.

Give God and God only all your love and you’ll get back so much in return, it will bowl you over like a tidal wave. That’s why the Commandment is to love God with everything you’ve got, because God wants to return your investment in him with exponentially compounding interest; for every penny’s worth of love you invest in God, he’ll give you a dollar’s worth, or ten dollars’ worth, or a million dollars’ worth. Who knows where he’ll stop? Look at Abraham and Noah and Moses and David. Look at Jesus. Look at Paul. Look at all these spiritual brothers of ours and see how their love investment in God was returned a million-fold or billion-fold or more. God wants to do that for all of us, if we would just let him, if we would just love him the way he’s enabled us to love him.

There’s no limit to how much we can love God. We put that limit on ourselves; God doesn’t.

To love God is to praise him; to praise him is to love him.

May you love God – may you praise him – with everything you’ve got.