When You Miss Jesus

I miss Jesus.

It’s a weird statement to hear from an on-the-field missionary but it’s true, honest, and transparent. It’s also something I’m sure I’m not alone in—both among my squadmates and blogreaders.

We all have different worship styles.

Even though I daily get to participate in many different acts/types of worship, not getting my “favorite” for a few days (or worse, a few weeks), can leave me feeling dry.

Just admit you’ve been there and don’t leave me hanging.

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Or maybe your “favorite” doesn’t seem to be working anymore. You’re worshipping diligently and still God feels distant.

Try Something Different

Ron Walborn teaches that there are seven basic ways to encounter God:

1. Aesthetic Instinct—seeing God in beauty, art, architecture, tradition, etc.

2. Experiential Instinct—seeing God through experiences

3. Activist Instinct—seeing God through achievement or accomplishments

4. Contemplative Instinct—seeing God through listening and being alone with Him

5. Student Instinct—seeing God through studying His word

6. Relational Instinct—seeing God through love, physical touch

7. Naturalist Instinct—seeing God through creation

Each way has positives and negatives. And each way can be dangerous if it’s the only way you encounter God.

Chances are you gravitate more towards one (or a few) than the others. He’s wired us all differently so the way I connect best with Him may not be your way.

We’re all wired differently.

You like cheeseburgers but I prefer hamburgers. You love hiking, and I’d prefer to spend some quality time with my computer.

It makes sense that we connect with God differently. But just like I can’t always sit and type and you can’t always hike, there’s value in exploring other activities just like there’s value in exploring other ways to connect with God.

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When what you’re doing to find God doesn’t seem to be working, try something different.

If you’re an experiential person, going to a concert every night will eventually not fill you the way it once did. But maybe some liturgy will hit the spot in your spirit.

If you’re an activist, eventually you’ll get burnt out trying to save the world. Try sitting in His presence just being. Let Him love over you in that silence.

If you’re a naturalist, this beach may not be any more beautiful than the last one. Realize there’s power in community and worshipping or discussing together.

When you miss Jesus, ask Him what your heart needs. Then be willing to hear (and act upon) the answer.

He wants to spend time with you. That just might not always look like what you’re expecting.

What worship style do you connect with best?