Rebecca West: Words & Music

Religion versus Relationship

This subject came to my mind very strongly after meeting so many "religious" people who are trying to find some kind of happiness, but not succeeding. There is a tremendous difference between being religious and having a personal relationship with God. It is as different as darkness is from light.

"The entrance and unfolding of Your words give light; their unfolding gives understanding (discernment and comprehension) to the simple." (Psalm 119:130, The Amplified Bible)

The truth can hurt sometimes. Just as walking from a dark room into a bright sunny room can be blinding at first. As our spiritual eyes become adjusted to the light of God's word, we can see more clearly as truth is revealed. As we allow His light to saturate our spirit and mind, we come to know that we are children of light. Matthew 5:14 says that we "are the light of the world."

When we are in a personal relationship with our Heavenly Father, we are intuitively going to treat each other with love and understanding. We will naturally behave in a manner that is pleasing to God. The benefits you receive from being in a relationship with God is love, joy, peace, and freedom. The acceptance of His amazing love will bring you out of bondage. There are so many wonderful promises in the Word of God, and we must receive them, truly believe them, to fully experience them.

Try to convince someone who has a close personal relationship with God, someone who has heard His voice, someone who has received a healing or miracle, that these things are not possible or do not exist. You can not. This is just a few of the benefits (blessings) that you can experience when you have a personal relationship with God. You cannot argue with a person with experience. If you have not experienced any of these wonderful things, then you are not qualified to refute them.

I am convinced that God can speak to us today in so many different ways, and that He does! I have heard His voice, I have felt His touch of healing. I refuse to limit the Almighty God of this universe. My trust is in Him for all things. He has proven to me, time and time again, how very much He loves me. He is faithful.

Bondage is a terrible thing. Sometimes it is only when you are free from it that you realize the pain you were in. Only then do you realize that you were held captive by the powers of darkness.

Religion tells you that you have to work your way to heaven, to God. Religion is man-made and is based on the theory of trying to please God, through strict rules, works, and repetitive scheduled worship services. The very thought that we could "work our way to God" or be "good enough" is not only bondage, but it is absolutely unrealistic, and I might add, will make one exhausted! This way of thinking can bring apathy, failure, and feelings of guilt.

When Jesus died on the cross for us, He purchased our freedom. There is nothing that you or I can do to earn it. It is His gift to us -- His blessing upon our lives, His love for us, given freely that we may have eternal life in Him, and with Him.

"So if the Son liberates you (makes you free men), then you are really unquestionably free." (John 8:36, The Amplified Bible)

~ Rebecca