The Truth about Getting Yourself Together before Growing Closer to God

When you have things in your past that you aren’t proud of it came feel difficult to come to God as you are, but that exactly what he wants.

If you are of the mindset that you need to get yourself together before you can have a close relationship with God, I want you to lean all the way into today’s conversation because we are going to take an honest look at how fear of intimacy is getting in the way of your relationship with God. 

Last year I spent more time than I want to admit thinking and considering if getting into another relationship and dating again was something that I wanted to do. I landed on no for a lot of reasons. But the very first thought that came to mind was, oh no, I am a hot mess. I’ve got to pull myself together before I’m going to be in a place where I feel like I’m ready to have a relationship or put myself out there. 

In this case, that thought was correct mostly. There are some things that I need to keep working through and working on before I even consider kind of getting back out there. Also, I am 100% content to remain president and vice president of the Single to Rapture Club. 

I started remembering that I had been in that same place with God. I thought, “God, I know I need to spend time with you. I need to pray and I need to be in the word. I need to do better because I want to be close to you, but I’ve got some things that I need to work out on my own first before I can actually come to you”. 

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I want to talk about this today because the idea that you need to get right first is just a fear of intimacy. That somehow you are not good enough to be in a relationship with God. This is utterly ridiculous! Why do you think that? Why do you tell yourself that lie? Why do you let the enemy have that power and control over you to think that you have to be perfect before you can go to God? 

God is not expecting perfection. Perfection is not possible here on this side of heaven. You are not Jesus Jr. He is the only person who’s ever been perfect on this earth, and it’s not possible for us. But you let yourself get trapped in this mindset of having to be perfect before you can go to God. 

I want to set some of us free from this today with some truth. This fear of not being good enough for God or needing to get yourself together first has a little ring of truth to it. Because that’s just how Satan works. He’s going to give you a little bit of truth with a little bit of his foolishness thrown in. 

The truth part is that you’re not good enough. No one is good enough for God. He is holy, and perfect, and demands holiness and perfection and his presence. You cannot do that on your own. That’s why Jesus came to Earth lived, did his ministry, and died on the cross because he’s the one who could do that. 

That’s the only way to God is through Jesus because of his work on the cross. That’s the gospel in a nutshell. You’re not going to be good enough, but that’s okay because you don’t have to be. God does not require you to have all of your stuff together to come to him. 

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He’s not the kind of God who would be so mean and so cruel as to require something that is 100% impossible for you to do. We can’t get ourselves together. We can’t be perfect. We can’t be good enough. Not without God, not without Jesus. It’s impossible. 

The takeaway for today is that you don’t need to be right for God. You get right by spending time with God. Now that we got that out of the way, let’s look at some more practical things that you can deal with this fear of intimacy when it comes to God. 

I have seen this in my own life and the lives of others. Thinking that I’m really angry but I can’t go to God with my anger. I can’t talk to him while I’m angry.  I can’t tell him that or why I’m angry because that’s disrespectful or because he’s God. 

The problem is that intimacy comes from sharing things. You have to share what you think with the other person. You share your feelings. You share your struggles. You share your story. You share who you are. That’s why it’s an intimate relationship because it’s close. You are sharing yourself with the other person.

If you’re not going to share yourself with God, you’re not going to be close to him at all. But y’all, here is the thing that we keep forgetting when it comes to God. He knows what you think and how you feel. He already knows all of that. So just go and talk to him about it. 

He loves you. He still sent Jesus down to the cross to die for your sins. He still wants to be with you and have a relationship with you. He still wants to bless you. He still has a plan, and he has a purpose for you. No matter how mean ugly or hateful, you think your thoughts or your feelings are God can take it.  

He can handle it. He can handle your anger. He can handle your hurt. He can handle you sitting on the floor in your closet in the dark screaming at the top of your lungs because you’re so angry about what is going on in your life. 

I know from experience. I have been that person in a heap on my floor completely out of control and completely ridiculous. In my hurt and pain with the snot and the tears and all the stuff yelling at God, because I was so angry, he still loved me. I’m still here. And I felt better on the other side of that. 

That’s the thing that gets missed. You’re so afraid of revealing that part of yourself, of being vulnerable. And I get it. People take advantage of and hurt you. You sometimes hurt other people. So it is really scary to think of being that open with somebody else. But here’s the thing. God is not human. He’s not us. 

You have to stop viewing God through the lens of other people. That does not serve you well. You cannot look at people and say, well, people did this, so therefore I can’t do that with God because other people have done X, Y, and Z. God is not people. He’s not a man. He’s not human. He does not betray us. He doesn’t hurt us. 

He doesn’t do any of those things. He is the safest person that exists. It’s God. Whatever you have, whatever you’re struggling with, it’s safe with Him. He’s not going to talk about you behind your back. He and Jesus and the Holy Spirit are not going to be in some group text talking about how ridiculous you are. 

It doesn’t work like that. He’s a safe person. He is a safe place. When you can get your mind around that, then you’ll be able to be open and you’re able to be vulnerable. If you want to be close to God, what you want is intimacy with God. And that only comes by sharing and being vulnerable with the other person. 

You have to let God see you. He already does. He already sees exactly who you are, the good, the bad, the ugly, all of it. He sees it. He knows it. He loves you. Tell yourself that over and over and over again until it gets in your head, down into your heart, and it gets down into your soul so that you can stop missing out on all the blessings that come from having a close relationship with God. 

You don’t have to get yourself together first. You can’t. You will never, ever be close to God if the requirement is you have to be all together first. No one in the bible had their lives completely together before they found God, grew to know God, walked with God, and did things for God. You are no different. 

Fear of intimacy is a really big thing that we deal with in our personal lives and we deal with it in our spiritual lives. If you can just learn to overcome that and do it anyway. Be afraid of being honest, of sharing your thoughts and feelings, but do it anyway. Be open, be vulnerable. 

I speak from experience, the more that I was able to open up to God and to be honest with God about what I was thinking, what I was feeling, and where I was at, that translated into my relationships with other people. 

I was able to then be open and vulnerable again with other people, with friends at church, etc. This is after years of spiritual abuse and church hurt. If anybody was not going to ever trust anybody ever again, it was going to be me.

But I knew that God wanted better for me. I knew that that was not God’s plan for me. I took that step of saying, okay, God, I am a hot mess times 2000, but I’m here and I can give you my mess because I don’t know what else to do with it. I can’t fix it. I’ve tried. I just make it worse. My perfectionism and my need to control is getting me nowhere. 

So I’m going to come to you and I’m going to give it to you and see if you can do something with it. And he can. He is the one who can take all of the stuff you think needs to be kept hidden away. He can take it and redeem it. He can make it beautiful, and he can use it for his purposes and his glory. 

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