“The foolish ones said to the wise, ‘Give us some of your oil; our lamps are going out.’ ‘No,’ they replied, ‘there may not be enough for both us and you. Instead, go to those who sell oil and buy some for yourselves.’” Matthew 25:8-9
Intimacy with God is a gift given to every believer in Jesus Christ. Jesus died and rose again, not just so that we could go to heaven one day, but so that we could experience Him right now.
Imagine for a moment a gas station that is giving away free gas. The only price you pay is the effort to get to that gas station and the time spent waiting while your tank is filled up. In God’s economy there is an abundance of the precious oil of intimacy, and it’s all free through Jesus, but we must make the effort to get to His station and be patient while He fills us up.
We can’t get this oil from one another. You can’t give me your relationship with God and I can’t give you mine. All we can do is tell each other where the station is and how to get the free oil. Each of us has to go there ourselves.
When we go through trials, when we experience injustice, when we need something that only God can give, and when Jesus comes again, we will wish we had taken time to become intimate with God. When you’re in the middle of the crisis there’s not time to develop intimacy that you don’t already have.
So don’t wait! Set a time and a place every day. Read God’s word and purpose to pray back to Him whatever He speaks. Journal those things He gives you and treat them as valued seeds that must be protected and watered. Develop a habit of waiting on God every day.
What starts as only a desire for intimacy must move to a plan for discipline. God’s reward will be an eventual delight in your quiet time that will make meeting with Him a highlight you look forward to each day. Desire, discipline, and then delight. Let your desire fuel a renewed effort at discipline. Stay at your discipline and pray for more and more delight.
Begin now to build a secret store of oil that no one else can see except you and God. As it grows, enjoy the assurance that you and God can face anything together and that you will be ready when Jesus splits the sky to come for us.