Lesson 4: Growing in Your relationship with Jesus Christ
This is part 4 to a 4 part series – Lessons for Christian Living
With the Holy Spirit directing your life, you will experience a deeper relationship with God and you will grow in your ability to trust Him.
What does it mean to grow in your relationship with Jesus?
Growing in your relationship with Jesus means to know Him better, to love and obey Him more.
“And this is the way to have eternal life-to know you, the only true God, and Jesus Christ, the one you sent to earth” (John 17:3).
“Jesus replied: ‘You must love the Lord your God with all your heart, all your soul, and all your mind.’ This is the first and greatest commandment.’” (Matthew 22:37-38)
Your growing love for God will lead you to obey His commandments.
[Jesus speaking] “Those who obey my commandments are the ones who love me. And because they love me, my Father will love them, and I will love them. And I will reveal myself to each one of them.” (John 14:21)
Just as it’s natural for a child to grow in a loving relationship with a parent, it is also natural for you to grow in your love relationship with God.
How can you grow in your relationship with Jesus?
Communication is vital to any relationship. Four aspects of communication will help you develop your relationship with Jesus.
- God communicates with us through the Bible, revealing His character and His will.
“All Scripture is inspired by God and is useful to teach us what is true and to make us realize what is wrong in our lives. It straightens us out and teaches us to do what is right. It is God’s way of preparing us in every way, fully equipped for every good thing God wants us to do.” (2 Timothy 3:16-17)
- We communicate with God through prayer, sharing our thoughts, our needs and our desire to do his will.These verses tell us we can pray about everything. When we pray according to God’s will, he hears us and answers us. Thanking God is also part of praying.
“Don’t worry about anything; instead, pray about everything. Tell God what you need, and thank him for all he has done. If you do this, you will experience God’s peace, which is far more wonderful than the human mind can understand. His peace will guard your hearts and minds as you live in Christ Jesus.” (Philippians 4:6-7)
“And we can be confident that he will listen to us whenever we ask him for anything in line with his will. And if we know he is listening when we make our requests, we can be sure that he will give us what we ask for.” (1 John 5:14-15)
“No matter what happens, always be thankful, for this is God’s will for you who belong to Christ Jesus.” (1 Thessalonians 5:18)
“And you will always give thanks for everything to God the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ.” (Ephesians 5:20)
- We communicate with Christians through fellowship, encouraging and building up one another.It is important to spend time with other Christians to encourage each other to love and do good. The Greek word for fellowship, koinonia, means “sharing in common.” We need to share our Christian experience with others who love God, and likewise allow them to share with us. God appoints the church as a place for us to meet other Christians and learn about God. Bible studies and other meetings are also helpful.
“Think of ways to encourage one another to outbursts of love and good deeds. And let us not neglect our meeting together, as some people do, but encourage and warn each other, especially now that the day of his coming back again is drawing near.” (Hebrews 10:24-25)
- We communicate with others who don’t know God personally by sharing about our relationship with Jesus.
“There is salvation in no one else! There is no other name in all of heaven for people to call on to save them.” (Acts 4:12)
Suggestions for further growth
Set aside a time and place for daily personal Bible study and prayer. A good book to begin with is the New Testament Book of John (included in the next section). As you read, underline verses you find particularly meaningful. Pray and ask God to show you who He is and how you can respond to Him.
Study other passages, such as the ones in this lesson. Also read Psalms 1, 34, 103 and 145; Matthew 7:7-11; Luke 9:23-26; John 15:1-7; 1 Corinthians 12:12-27; 2 Corinthians 5:17-21; and Colossians 1:9-12.
This is the beginning of your Christian life and there is much more to discover than what’s covered in these four lessons. Take the initiative today to find a church in your neighbourhood, and make plans to attend regularly. For additional Christian materials, check out your local Christian bookstore (try looking under “books” in the Yellow Pages).
As you rely on the Holy Spirit for power, read the Bible, pray, spend time with other believers and tell people about Jesus, God will produce His character in you and you will mature spiritually.