Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Yep theres a difference

I want to start today by saying I absolutely love God! Yep...He just keeps becoming more amazing to me!

I had prepared a post for today...which I think He gave to me and led me to write, however as I entered my bed last night and started to pray there was some questions and things that need to come before that post!

So today join me in asking these questions. Ask yourself, ask God, ask your friends and family.

**Is there a difference between religion and relationship?

**Does the word of God, the Bible, focus on religion or relationship?

**Does the church focus on religion or relationship?

**Do I have a relationship with God?

May our hearts, minds and souls be open to hear the answer, the Truth!

Please share your comments, answers, and ideas! Oh and leave more questions if they come to mind!


Anonymous said...

The "nothingness of this world" ?
That emptiness always brings such a desire to feel, FEEL, I mean really FEEL Gods Love..Yep that is a relationship...not religion...Thank-You, Jesus, that you want us to KNOW WE ARE LOVED...empty us of this emptiness and create in us YOU! I love you Lord Jesus and it's in Your Name, Amen..
Love, Hugs and Prayers

Nicole said...

Absolutely LOVE this song! It gave me goosebumps to hear it today. I heard it over the weekend and really worshipped to it. This is my heart. I want there to be substance to my life, not just go through the motions!!!

In answer to your question, I do believe there is a difference between relationship and religion. I believe religion has such a bad conotation because people who have become "legalistic" in the way they believe and live. Although, religion, as my cousin-in-law says helps guide you, BUT it's all about the relationship! I really like that definition. If others think that I am religious because of me obedience to Christ then so be it. To me it's all about how I have grown to desire to obey Him out of my love for Him.

Others have told me that it should be this way my whole life, but not until recently have I understood this at heart level. It was always in my head, and was confusing to me. There were lies that were blocking the truth of God's love to penetrate my heart. God is still working in my heart. There are definetly areas that I need to improve in, in regards to my obedience. Thank goodness this life is a journey and God is patient with us, and I truly believe is more concerned about the heart of the matter than immediate outward results. That way they will be lasting, not superficial. They will be out of a love relationship with Him rather than a religious "duty/obligation".

Wow, this is long. I hope that what I wrote makes sense. Love ya sistah!

Keep pressing in, listening, and serving Him. You are taking us on quite a journey and I am so excited!!!

♪♪Melody♪♪ and Puddin said...

I love that you are doing this session on relationships. The pastor of the church I attend is a great teacher. The past two Sundays he has taught about humlity and acceptance. Working on just those two areas alone definately improve relationships. Can't wait to see what he adds next.
God wants us to have a relationship with Him, not go thru a bunch of religious rituals. The bible is our guide on relationships. Churches vary on whether they are religious(ritual)or relationship oriented. I have a personal relationship with God and am deeply praying to improve it. Looking forward.

~*~KIMBERLY~*~ said...

This post provoked a heart response in me and the Lord is speaking to my heart through it. I'll be making a post using that video.

We all become complacent in our faith just going through the motions. I don't want to be like that!

My answers:
**Is there a difference between religion and relationship?
The definition of religion is:
'a strong belief in a supernatural power or powers that control human destiny'.
The definition of relationship is:
'a state of connectedness between people (especially an emotional connection)'.

**Does the word of God, the Bible, focus on religion or relationship?
I found 6 scriptures that even talked about religion. And two of them were this:
James 1:26-27
26 If anyone among you thinks he is religious, and does not bridle his tongue but deceives his own heart, this one’s religion is useless. 27 Pure and undefiled religion before God and the Father is this: to visit orphans and widows in their trouble, and to keep oneself unspotted from the world.
Just from that alone tells me we need to be working out our faith in God.
I've found 14 scriptures using the NLT translation that talk about relationships. Only a few of them mentioned human relationships. The rest were about having a right relationship with God. Here's a couple:
Luke 12:21-22
21 “Yes, a person is a fool to store up earthly wealth but not have a rich relationship with God.”
22 Then, turning to his disciples, Jesus said, “That is why I tell you not to worry about everyday life—whether you have enough food to eat or enough clothes to wear.

**Does the church focus on religion or relationship?
Depends on the church.

**Do I have a relationship with God?
I have a relationship with God based on the true definition of religion. HE IS THE Supernatural being in charge of ALL.

Paula (SweetPea) said...

Most definitely there's a difference in religion and relationship. I believe the Bible is all about relationship(s). I hope that most churches teach and talk about relationship and not religion and legalistic duties. Yes, I have a could be better, I desire for it to be more. Thank God it's not what it use to be but not what it could be.

This song has been played a lot lately and talked about on Klove Christian radio. Something about sharing the motions on his website.

Runner Mom said...

Wow! These comments are wonderful. I praise Him that He made us for a relationship with Him. :)Nichole, thanks for being obedient and listening to God for your posts! You are awesome!


From the Heart said...

The dictionary describes "Religion" as a body of beliefs and practices regarding the supernational and the worship of one or more dieties. You could probably find many, many Religions, but if they don't teach a Relationship with God the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit then I wouldn't want to be a part of that. To me having a Relationship with God, a friend, a spouse, etc. is getting to know who they are, what they believe and teach, and how they treat you. I would say there is a difference between Religion and Relationship. The most important Relationship is what we have with God. If we have a good relationship with Him then He will lead us to good relationships with others. I'm just speaking from my heart. But after reading all the other comments I believe we all want the same kind of Reltionship - a Godly one- not a religous one.
From My Heart to Yours,

Chatty Kelly said...

I just love this song! There is a BIG different between religion & relationship.

I always put it like this. Believing in God is not enough - it is the relationship. Because I believe in the existance of Bill Clinton - but I am not a democrat. I don't follow his "teachings" or what the democrats believe. Likewise, believing in the existance of God, but not following his teachings is not what it's about.

Jesus told the pharisees something similar.

Leslie said...

I believe religion is more about traditions, customs, and rituals, whereas a relationship is knowing Christ. I have several friends who grew up in Catholic families who are now Christians. (I'm not saying that Catholics are not Christians!) They have said it is hard to break away from the Catholic church because of the traditions that form their way of life.

The Bible focuses on our relationship with God and Christ. The desire a relationship with us.

Regarding question #3, I think it depends on the type of church you're talking about. It should focus on your relationship with the Father.

Yes, I have a relationship with God through prayer and reading His word and trying my best to do his will!

Lori said...

Hello All~ Wow, such good questions to get us thinking, Nichole!

Religion would be more the set of beliefs while relationship is living out the beliefs...I believe the Bible gives us the factual information, but encourages to live it out. The church teaches scripture while encouraging us to live a life that resembles Christ, so that others' see us as different - in a good way. We don't react the same because people of the world are seeking to satisfy their 'self.' While our goal should be to allow Christ to live out of us. To put the needs of others' before our own.
Yes, I do have a personal relationship with God. He's with me wherever I go. I seek to be filled with His Spirit everyday. I don't know what I'd do without Him! My Father! :)

I have a question. :) I know we all talk to God throughout the day, read scripture, study the Bible, do Bible Studies, etc. but, I'm wondering if anyone has ideas on how they have learned to put Him into their day? Does this make sense? Some of the ways he's whispered to me and I've incorporated into my days when it works is:
ipod with worship songs-I do this when I'm cleaning...
CD of the Bible - I listen to this driving in the car doing my errands...
memorizing verses...
Morning walking my dog- my special prayer time.
I love to hear how people seek God throughout their day in spontanious ways. :)
Love & Hugs,
Lori - AZ

Kimberly said...

Wow! Lots of great answers to your questions!

I definitely agree there is a VAST difference between relationship and religion. That difference, I believe, is something that keeps some from Him...because all they have seen is "religion." My grandfather was a very religious man. Very. And now my mom will not go to church. She spent her whole life seeing religion instead of the beauty of true relationship with the Lord. I pray for her that she will discover the joy of relationship with Him. And I ever pray for the deepening of my own relationship with Him. I don't want to just go through the motions!!!

Love ya',

Angela said...

I think there definitely is a difference between religion and relationship. By definition, Christianity is a religion, but it is a religion based on relationships. First and foremost, our relationship with Christ and then secondly our relationship with others. Wonderful song.

Leslie said...

Oh Nichole you make me giggle! If you could only see the "big city" I live in! It has only been in the last year that we got a Taco Bell, Chick-Fil-A and Target. I live at least 30 minutes from any mall!

Sue J. said...

Like most things in our world, we messed up 'religion.' At its core, 'religion' means "to bind together." Relationships ARE what bind people together. Unfortunately, in our sin-filled world, we have taken religion and put our own rules, structure and personal guidelines on top of the foundation that is supposed to be solely Jesus Christ.

The Bible has plenty to say about what happens when we build upon a foundation other than our Lord and Savior. Would God leave Jesus as the "chief cornerstone" of a building that is otherwise built upon the sayings and musings of men?!

Why do we take the beautiful, the simple, and think we can make it better? Jesus simply said, "Come." Jesus simply (and not so simply) offered love for our taking, and for our giving back.

Obedience of the Levitical traditions is not what Christ offered us. The veil of the temple was torn that we might have free access to a relationship with God through Him.


So, how do we work through our religions to keep Christ as the cornerstone and very foundation? Let's open up that dialogue with Him and find out!

Tea With Tiffany said...

I put this song on my blog a couple months ago. I love it. And yes, there is a huge difference between religion and relationship. I'm known to some family members in my life as religious. That's like nails on a chalkboard. I am not religious at all. I'm all about knowing God in relationship! Period!

Love Him.

Love you,