Let me teach you something about religious envy. The knowledge of God is supposed to bring out the best in people but for some, it produces personality dislocations, emanating from pride. Maybe it’s because God is the greatest personality in the universe, so in the same way that people freak out when they’re close to celebrities, they do the same when they know God. They do so especially when God deigns to use them or speak to them. They suddenly feel like they have “arrived” and have exclusivity of understanding of God’s word. They do not realise that God is omnipresent and so runs parallel histories and relationships with every single Christian. For Moses, he appeared in a burning bush, but did so with no one else. John was given a private guided tour of the past, present and future in heaven.

The only common denominator for all Christian relationships is the Bible. But, when it comes to our daily dealings and conversations with God, each expression is flavourful, adventurous, surprising and most of all distinct. You have your own private secrets and experiences with God that he shares with no one else. And like the Book of Revelations intimates, God can give you your own private pet name and vice versa.

Religious people hate independence and by extension, they almost hate you too. They were brought up to follow rules and obey commands. They are always talking about the commands of God. They understand effort. Every little miracle is earned and worked for. They are not acquainted with the unforced rhythms of grace. If they want something from God or need to hear from him, they must fast for three days and pray for twenty-one. They are still stuck in the Old Testament characterised by sacrifices and appeasement. They work for everything they receive from God. You on the other hand, hear God in the toilet and while you’re walking down the road. The Holy Spirit wakes you up to pray and instructs you to fast. When you do, the time breezes by and you’re shocked it’s so easy. You are relying on God’s grace and understand the humility and responsibility that comes with it. It makes you love God more and have compassion for others.

But, religious people can’t understand why you don’t seem to be “doing anything” yet you’re successful, happy and on close terms with God. They wonder why their own religious hustle isn’t working or why it’s producing such meagre results. And so, they try to bring you down and put guilt on you. They tell you that’s not the way things are supposed to be done and that you’re sinning. Then, they also wave their ultimate “consolation” in your face – they try to convince you that while you’re enjoying on earth, they, and they alone will make heaven or receive golden crowns. So it doesn’t matter what progress you make on earth; they will allegedly win in the end.

Now, this is my advice to you. Ignore the religious. Ignore them completely and avoid arguing with them. They should face their own relationship with God and you should face yours. They are not your target market. God has already saved them and it’s his job to straighten them out. Your audience is those who do not know God and who will be drawn by your light.

Be bold to enjoy your own relationship with God and not what someone else thinks your relationship should be. Don’t allow anyone to dump a weight of guilt on you.

Know this, God is waiting to have an absolutely fantastic adventure with you. Jump in.

(PS: The theme song for this post is Pieces by Steffany Gretzinger)

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