How much do you really desire communion with God? By communion is meant how much do you run with great eagerness to be found talking with God or knowing that you are constantly in his presence in everything you do.
By way of example, a boy after school would often run home to commune with his PlayStation, or a person who loves money will joyfully commune with businesses in order to gain more money. In our day many of us commune with technology. At first sunrise we check our emails, before our eyes shut we linger on the internet.
Many of us have friends whom we are eager and desperate to commune with that we constantly make it our business to engage with them because we have some pleasure in communing with them. Those who are in love know of the deep longing of communion and how sweet and satisfying that communion is when had. One lover cannot wait until he has returned into his beloved's arms and the other waits with longing for her beloved to be in sight as to run and greet them with a wet kiss.
My friends, When was the last time that joy overwhelmed your soul that you ran, leaving all in order to meet your Heavenly Father, His Son and the Holy Spirit? When was the last time your sleeping heart ached for the morning because you long to worship your beloved God? When was the last time you finished work, and desired to run into your room, closing all the windows and blinds in order to enjoy, delight and commune with God?
It seems to me that Communion with God is acted upon when our hearts are filled with care, but when they are empty of the fevers of life, how many are found to commune with God for pleasure and happiness?
This is one reason I think that the prayer rooms are often empty or poorly attended. Therefore it will not surprise me if a great portion of those who confess fellowship with God have left off constant communion with God. The three reasons why I think this is so is three fold.
1. People who confess to be in fellowship with God are now out of love with God.
2. They have no real sense on the importance of constant communion in order for the growth of their faith.
3. They do not see that it is in communion with God can they have their true happiness. There are more reasons that can be submitted but these for now will suffice.
1. People who confess to be in fellowship with God are now out of love with God. A man who has no real love for his wife would desire no real communion with her except those which are necessary. They will discourse only mere trifles given brief answers to one another, but there will be nothing of that substance of joy and happiness in wanting to know his wife. He will not speak of her to his friends, He would have no joyful desire to go home but home he must go indeed. Likewise those in the church who have no real love for God or have fallen out of love with God are those who will do the bare necessities. They will come to church on Sundays to offer up their societal Christian duty and sing songs as if they were in love, but as soon as these errands are done, there is no more joyful desire to wake up in communion with God or to live their day in communion with him, whom they claim to love. These will speak to God about those things which are necessary e.g. praying before meals, and these things will have no substance in their communication because their end is to offer up a religion rather than the substance found in a happy relationship.
These who are out of love with God are those who have forgotten their first love. They have simply forgotten the freshness and fragrance of Christ atoning sacrifice, the depths of the Father’s love and the Spirit’s desire to distribute to them the comfort of his nature. They have lost sight of the amazing goodness of God as given to them in the gospel, they have forgotten his heart for them. They have not remembered the words of Christ, that the Father loves them and his disposition towards them his good. They have forgotten that greeting which always comes favourable to them in the words of grace and peace and even so, in a greater degree they have forgotten that God desires fellowship with them and that He wants to make their home with them. "If anyone loves me, he will keep my word, and my Father will love him, and we will come to him and make our home with him.” John 14:23. They have also forgotten the words, "In that day you will know that I am in my Father, and you in me, and I in you". They have not remembered that Christ promised not to leave them as orphans. They have forgotten that Christ is constantly knocking upon the doors of their hearts saying each morning will you not let me in so that you may have your heart in mine and we can dine together.
O sluggish saint, I beg you to arise from your sleep and come running into communion with your God. He loves you, He desires you and will you not want to commune with him. Will you pass by the abundant feast he has prepared for you? Will you continue to neglect him, for if you do, then fear, that perhaps you truly do not have any love for him. O awaken your love, remind yourself why you first loved him. Have him again in your sights and return to your first love.
2 They have no real sense on the importance of constant communion in order for the growth of their faith. Those that have no real sense in communion with God in order for the maturity of their faith will neglect communion with God for other religious duties. Their ways will be pragmatic, too much time in prayer will be seen as energy wasted, and although they deny this in speech yet their practise speaks loudly. They have not yet understood that communion with God is the real source of power and that which causes lasting fruit. Remain in me and I will remain in you says our Lord. We are to remain in communion with him, we are not to desert him for practical means.
It was our Lord who said, Joh 15:4, Abide in me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit by itself, unless it abides in the vine, neither can you, unless you abide in me.
This text exhorts us to cleave to Christ with all of our heart and soul. An infant cannot satisfy his thirst unless his parents gives it to him, likewise no saint will bear fruit unless they continue to abide in Christ, unless they continue to commune with Christ. Communion is at the heart of procuring fruit in Christ’s Kingdom. Those who have left off this holy delight are those who soon have no real sense of the presence of Christ in their ministry. All of their works is decorated in human wisdom.
If you desire for your faith to yield that 100 fold which our Lord speaks of, then commune with him. Seek him with all of your heart. Consider him your daily treasure. Make him the satisfaction of all of your hunger and thirst. Be found constantly in his presence then those fruits of righteousness will grow abundantly and beautifully in you.
3. And thirdly there are those who have not yet understood that true happiness is found in communion with God. It is a Christian truth that mankind was made for God and to enjoy him forever. The picture we get of the duty of the saints in all eternity is worship. They will be delighting in God forever. To commune with God is to be truly satisfied with God regardless of our condition. When we bring our sorrowful petitions to him, is not the end of our petitions for him to comfort us and set peace in our hearts? Is not the end of our prayers ultimately to say your will be done O Lord. And is there not ultimately pleasure and happiness at the right hand of God? Those who have lingered much in communion can say, that it is in those moments when they have so experienced God as vivid and full in their hearts they did encounter their deepest joy of happiness and satisfaction. Nothing else can compare to it. But if one is not sensible of the deep happiness contained in this communion with God, then one will not so desire to run towards it. We were made to be happy and this desire is to have its end in God. He is the source of all pleasures; and if we are wise then we will indeed hate our relationships with other things and run to Him as fast as we can for our happiness.
Christ often communed with his disciples with words. He said in Joh 15:11, "These things I have spoken to you, that my joy may be in you, and that your joy may be full". These are strange words as one commentator writes, that one about to be crucified should speak of his joy! His joy was union with and presence of the Father. He had "anointed him with the oil of gladness above his fellows." He desired his disciples to have that joy, the constant consolation of the sense of the presence of Christ.
O come and speak to Christ, Come and speak also to his Father. They have spoken to you so that your joy may be full. O come into the conversation, come into the fellowship to which you were made for. O come into the fellowship of the Holy Spirit. Come and be sensible as to have your heart indulged in pleasure; for as well as the end of the words he spoke was all to the praise of his glory yet it is also that his joy may be in you and that your joy may be full. I know that you want fullness of Joy, so come now and linger much in communion with your Heavenly Father.
To add these last few words as to promote no misunderstandings, that of course, to commune with God can be done in various places (in churches, with believers, and etc.) and can be done constantly in the soul. I believe that we can carry God in our souls, being ever so mindful of his presence at all times that no matter where we are, we can be sure that He is there with us. And an acknowledgement of this basic fact will indeed free you to lift up holy hands or quietly, amidst a crowd of people speaking to your beloved God in the joy of your soul.
And there is that quiet place. That place of intimacy. That bed of matrimony which only a husband and a wife share and there, they commune so deeply that none knows the pleasure of it except them who engaged in such holy acts. Likewise, there is that place, that heaven of paradise where one ought to visit often, making sure that it is only them and their Creator; and then with great humbling energy place themselves upon his loving arms and speak to him the desires of their soul. There he would listen and speak in return to you, comforting you and flushing you with the joy that is much contained in him.
Communion demands perseverance. Communion demands a willingness to stay beyond the discipline, until the sunshine is poured into the soul. O to commune with God is infinitely better than to commune with anyone else. And what shame that many of us have forsaking such a happy engagement. O now, will you not shut your eyes, will you not forsake the world’s pleasures of your heart and seek heavenly communion with your God? O pursue communion, have him in your heart. Love him with magnificence and you shall see your soul warmth and caressed with sovereign joy.