“Indeed, I count everything as loss because of the surpassing worth of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord.” ~ Philippians 3:8
The sight was overwhelming as I glanced around. A sea of Bible-toting women converging onto the convention center in Cincinnati. Already apprehensive about being in a large unfamiliar city, the atmosphere and surroundings in the arena looked so foreign to me I might as well have been on a different continent.
I was about to attend my first Christian women’s conference early in my walk with Jesus. There, in a crowd of 17,000 women, the God of the universe spoke to a wide-eyed, young girl as if she were an audience of one.
Desperately seeking significance, He stole my heart that weekend with five simple words that has become my life verse:
“I want to know Christ.” Philippians 3:10
There was something remarkable I saw on the faces of 17,000 women worshipping Christ. It was sheer delight and I wanted what they had. I soaked it all in.
At the conference, I was introduced to the Amplified Bible translation of Philippians 3:10 and it completely resonated in my heart:
“that I may know Him [experientially, becoming more thoroughly acquainted with Him, understanding the remarkable wonders of His Person more completely]”
To know Christ means more than intellectual factual knowledge. The Greek word for “know” means to have intimate knowledge and a personal level of familiarity. Beyond being holy, omnipotent and omniscient, our God is relational. Jeremiah 29:13 tells us when we seek Him, we will find Him if we seek Him with all our heart.
The incredible thing is that God pursues us. It is a sacred romance.
We love because He first loved us. (1 John 4:19) In my pursuit to know Him, to understand the remarkable wonders of His Person, I encountered an endless fountain which is the heart of God.
And His heart is for us.
To know Christ is to love Him.
He is knowable and He has holy affection for us.
I love the fact the Hebrew word for “know” in the Old Testament is used to depict the close relationship between a husband and wife. God refers to Himself as “husband” to His people and we are the bride of Christ. His Word uses the most secret and tender experience on earth – the union of husband and wife – to convey the depth of intimacy God offers to us.
It is fascinating that Paul wrote the book of Philippians almost 30 years after he encountered the Living Christ on the road to Damascus. He had known Jesus experientially, intimately and passionately. Writing this letter from prison, Paul boldly testifies that:
“Indeed, I count everything as loss because of the surpassing worth of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord.” Philippians 3:8
Nothing is worth more than knowing Christ.
A sacred romance with Jesus is what our hearts long for.
Our souls yearn to know it’s origin and be reunited with its source. He courts us and woos us with holy passion.
It is mysterious and it is glorious. When we come to a place where we willingly follow God’s fiery pillar up the mountain, our souls will finally be home.
Do you have a deep longing in your heart that you can’t seem to fill? Sweet friend, Jesus is looking to fill it with Himself.