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Black woman praying

by James Washington
Special to the NNPA from The Dallas Weekly

Let’s be real. How many people have a personal relationship with Jesus Christ? How about a personal relationship with the Almighty or, perhaps a personal experience with the Holy Spirit? Many of us can acknowledge and understand personal in the secular realm. We can all attest to personal relationships with other people. They are at times wonderful, painful, even traumatic, but you have to admit they are and have been indeed personal. In many instances these are the relationships that shape our character and define us as unique human beings. Not only do deep substantive personal relationships define us, they also can set a course for our lives long after they’re over. Your relationships to your mother, brother, spouse, lover or friend can, and do, leave lasting impressions, if not scars, that never leave us and have consequences for how we live and relate to others today. It is how we deal with and recover from personal relationships that allow us to eventually become who we really are. You are an extremely blessed person if you are able to share life’s monumental moments with others. Most of us, if we’re honest with ourselves, keep our most valued moments hidden in secret places to cherish as treasures or to despise alone.

Isn’t it interesting that the road to enlightened salvation begins with a personal experience that many call ‘being saved,” being called, accepting Christ as their Lord and Savior? Having had that experience, I can understand how that might be puzzling to those who have not. How can you have a personal experience, how can you have a personal relationship with the invisible, the untouchable, someone who has reportedly been dead for over two centuries? My answer is if you had a real relationship with someone who is now deceased or who is no longer in your life, then you know, you too, can testify about the profound effect that person had on you as a human being. Even now, you respond to the knowledge of how that person might look upon certain behaviors you wouldn’t want any of us to know you engaged in. You know if that person would be proud of you or embarrassed for you. That’s reality. That’s personal and that’s how it is with God. By faith in Jesus Christ, by belief in His godliness, by trying to live by His Word, by recognition of His deity, by understanding His sacrifice, by these thing and much more do we begin this personal trip. You can’t have a personal relationship with anyone until you truly understand and then respond to where he or she is coming from. Anything else is casual. That too is reality. Only a fool would claim a personal relationship with a stranger. Only an idiot would submit themselves to the direction of someone they just met yesterday. How many times have you spent an ungodly amount of time with someone who turned out to be foreign to your spirit? I guess what I’m saying is we don’t know God because we seek Him not. We don’t know God because we haven’t studied Him, haven’t taken the time to get to know what He’s all about, haven’t shared haven’t gotten personal. A personal relationship is not achieved by casual contact. It requires effort. It requires time, yours and God’s. He’s waiting for you to make the introduction. He’ll handle the rest. May God bless and keep you always.

Have a nice day and may God bless and keep you always,

James

jaws@dallasweekly.com

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