Last night I watched the classic movie, The Philadelphia Story. I loved the dialogue and interactions between the main characters. I easily get drawn in.
This time as I watched, there was one line that captured my mind. The movie centers around the Katherine Hepburn character and her relationships with the three leading men. Two of the men adore her; the other loves her. The later one spends the movie trying to help her realize this.
There was some tough communication as she heard how she was being viewed. At one point she says, I don’t want to be worshipped. I want to be loved.
I was stopped by this line because I felt that God was saying the exact same thing. Could that be true?
The Philadelphia Story gives a good description of the difference between being worshipped and being loved. When you worship someone, you keep them at a distance and align your life to adjust to theirs. Your life only matters to the degree you can please the one you worship.
When you love someone, you maintain your identity. There is now a partnering together where the two can become better than the one. There is not a consistent lead. There is give and take. There is a denying of yourself for the sake of the other and there are times of letting the other person denying themselves for you.
If we are too afraid to be ourselves because we may make God angry, then we do not love Him. We need to be raw and fully alive. We need to be true to ourselves in order to love. Read the Psalms. There are places that make you cringe that someone would say or think that. That doesn’t faze God. In fact He shows it off as a model of someone after His own heart.
To only stay in the role of worshipping God, we keep Him at a distance, wholly separate from us.
God doesn’t want to be unattainable; He wants intimacy.
This doesn’t mean we are to pull God down to our level. God wants to set us in His presence. We have been made like God, created in His image. He calls us holy and co-heirs with Christ.
The mystery that is unveiled in the new covenant is the God is in us (Colossians 1:26-27).
There is no getting closer than that. The two become one. It is what marriage between a man and woman is to represent – the joining of the two into one flesh (Ephesians 5:31-32).
Some of us need to upgrade our relationships with God. When we are distant from God, we can only at best beg Him for things. As we get closer to Him in intimacy, all we have to do is ask. Pursue that intimacy. We need to remove the “sinner” label off ourselves and see ourselves as God sees us… “holy, saints, friends, and brides” (Hebrews 10:10, Romans 1:7, John 15:15, & Revelation 19:7
Question: Can you envision God holding you close to Himself? Do you feel that you have to guard yourself around God? Do you expect blessings from God just because He loves you?
Read the second review of The Philadelphia Story here.
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Kevin Shorter is the founder of this prayer-coach site and have served for several years in ministry and churches teaching on a variety of Biblical topics. Go to the contact page to request him to speak at your conferences and seminars.