by Brad jolly
Jesus Christ dwells in every believer. He lives in us by the Holy Spirit, who makes Christ real to us by reminding us that we belong to Christ. The Holy Spirit also enables us to enjoy Christ’s presence in our lives moment-by-moment.
The Bible tells us in John 16:14-15
“He will bring glory to me by taking from what is mine and making it known to you. All things that the Father has are Mine. Therefore I said that He will take from what is Mine and make it known to you.”
Every believer has from time to time experienced the sense that his or her nearness to Christ is not there. In other words, Christ feels far away and we do not enjoy the sweet fellowship with Him that we used to.
So why does this happen? What makes Christ not seem as real to us as He used to? There are 2 primary reasons for this. Let’s explore each and also see how to make Christ real to us again.
1) Unconfessed Sin
Even as believers, we sin most every day. God made provision for our sins at the cross when Jesus died in our place to pay for our sins. When we sin, the Holy Spirit living inside of us is grieved over our sin and will convict us. He wants us to confess our sin to God. What does it mean to confess our sin before Him? It means that we are to agree with God that what we have done is sin and to repent or turn from it back to God. When we do this, God has a wonderful promise for us:
“But if we confess our sins to Him, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all wickedness.” 1 John 1:9
No matter what we have done, Christ has already made provision for our sin through his atoning sacrifice on the cross. This is why God can forgive us. Once we have confessed our sin to God, knowing that Christ has paid for our sin, God can and will cleanse us from our sin so that we can enjoy our fellowship with Christ once again.
If the Holy Spirit is convicting you of a sinful action or attitude, then immediately confess it to Him. Don’t delay as that will lead to becoming insensitive to the Holy Spirit and then finding yourself harboring sin in your heart.
2) The Cares of This World
In addition to unconfessed sin in our lives, we also can find ourselves being consumed with the cares of this world, meaning we find ourselves so preoccupied with following after the things of this world, such as money, the popularity/acceptance of others, or adopting the attitudes and views of non-believers. It doesn’t take long before we spend more time pursuing everything else and not spending time with Christ in prayer or His word. This is a sin, and it grieves the Holy Spirit also.
“The cares of this world, the deceitfulness of riches, and the desires for other things entering in choke the word, and it becomes unfruitful.” Mark 4:19
The Answer: How Do I Make Christ Real to Me Again?
Sin, whether harboring it unconfessed before God, or being consumed by the things of this world, grieves the Holy Spirit. When He is grieved, Christ will not seem real to us any longer because sin and Christ cannot both be on the throne of our hearts. Either Christ will be or sin will be. We have seen in 1 John 1:9 that God tells us how to deal with sin as believers: confess it before Him (meaning that we agree with Him that we have sinned and we repent of it). If you want to experience Christ being real to you once again,
1) Pray to God and let Him know that you want to experience the sweet fellowship of Christ again.
2) Ask the Holy Spirit to show you any sins that He wants you to confess.
3) Confess each of these sins, that means individually one-by-one, to Him.
4) By faith, trust God to cleanse you from your sins.
5) Thank Him for His forgiveness and cleansing you.
6) Spend time talking to Him in prayer and reading your Bible.
Regular confession of sin before God and spending time in fellowship with Christ through prayer and His word will result in the Holy Spirit making Christ seem real to you again. Friend, our relationship to Christ was meant to be enjoyed every single day. If you are not enjoying the realness of Christ in your life, start right this minute. He is waiting for you to!