Sometimes I think people fancy spiritual intimacy as a final destination, something you achieve. But that's not true. Spiritual intimacy is an ongoing pursuit, a developing conversation.
Being that it's a conversation with an unending and unfathomable being [God], our pursuit of intimacy will never see an end. Our pursuit will never experience the fulfillment of the finish line. When we, therefore, approach the topic of spiritual intimacy we should remember not to be discouraged when we drift.
Like any relationship, either with our friends or spouse or sibling or parent, we will drift in our affections and may even experience estrangement for a time.
But evenso, those times of distance contribute to intimacy. For we draw from those times just as we draw from those times of beauty and closeness—all times close and far layering our relationships, coloring intimacy. Each creates a depth and artistry appropriate to our existence and form.
"Love never ends." (1 Corinthians 13:8)
This partial verse reminds us that God is love. It's not our love that never ends, it's his and it's him. All the earth passes, but he remains. We grope through the fog of the world. We squint through the murky glass of reality.
And all in pursuit of that which has no end. All in pursuit of that which prompts our hope, and undergirds our faith. All in pursuit of an eluding closeness. All in pursuit of the tremenda majestas ... of God our Aweful Majestic.
Do not dismay in "the drift." Close your eyes and listen. He is close. Intimacy stands, just over there. Simply reach, and hold.
Timothy Willard loves to sit with his wife by the bonfire and make up stories about Tom the Backyard-Badger for his three lovely daughters. When he's not carving up the Appalachian Mountains on his Salsa El Mariachi, you can find him busy writing a book, collaborating on a book, or reading a book written by someone dead and gone. Timothy studied beauty in the works of C.S. Lewis under theologian Alister McGrath. The author of five books, including Veneer: Living Deeply in a Surface Society (Zondervan), Timothy is currently finishing The Life-Changing Adventure of Chasing Beauty (Eerdmans, 2019), preparing his doctoral thesis for publication, and trying to find a publisher for his first novel The Tempest and the Bloom. He lives somewhere in the south Charlotte woods.