Many of us often sing the song, “As the deer panteth for the water, so my soul panteth after Thee, You alone are my heart’s desire and I long to worship You ….” But often, it’s a fleeting sentiment and we wonder why we don’t feel that way all the time. This reflection explains how you can sustain the feeling and grow intimate with God. Read and be blessed in Jesus’ name.

We often admire those who are sold out to God, who seem lost in Him and who are single-minded in His service as Jesus and the apostles were. The purity of their lives challenges us. We wonder how they manage to stay above the entanglements of this life, how they can be immune to the allurements of the age they live in that cause other people to compromise their faith and conform to the world.

In the case of Jesus, His detachment from the standards and ways of this world was such that the Jews often misunderstood His words. This is more evident in the gospel of John than in the others. Only those who shared His love for the Father and vision for the salvation of the world could make sense of most of what He was saying.

The question is: How can we be like Jesus, the saints and prophets of old in this regard? How can we be deeply intimate with the holy God? How can we be abandoned to Him that as Oswald Chambers puts it, we readily give our “utmost for His highest”?

How can we be intimate with God like Jesus, the apostles and prophets of old? Click To Tweet

Intimacy with God begins with a hunger for His presence. Nothing else seems to satisfy. And the more we experience Him, the more we want of Him. That is why Moses who’d been speaking with God face to face as a friend still demanded that God show him His glory in Exodus 33:18.

Therefore, we need to ask God to overtake us such that we always remember that though we are in the world, we are not of the world. We are citizens of another kingdom: God’s kingdom. Basically, we ask God to create a hunger for Him and those things that point us to Him in our hearts, things like His word and prayer time.

In addition to praying this with our own words, the psalms are full of passages that can convey what we want for the man of God, King David, was often consumed with longing for God and sang about it. The old hymns and contemporary Christian music can also be of help. One of my favourite worship songs is based on the prayer we are concerned with here and it goes like this:


“Take me past the outer courts
Into the Holy Place
Past the brazen altar
Lord, I want to see Your face
Pass me by the crowds of people
The priests who sing Your praise
I hunger and thirst for Your righteousness
And it’s only found one place

“Take me into the Holy of Holies
Take me by the blood of the Lamb
Take me into the Holy of Holies
Take a coal, touch my lips, here I am”
(Lyrics of “Take me in” by the band Kutless. You can listen to the song here.)

Such a prayer is clearly in the will of God because He created us for this very purpose – that we might be close to Him and has His arms forever stretched out towards us. So He will speedily answer but the transition is not often automatic. Our response to His answer determines whether we remain in the outer courts of His glory or proceed to the inner parts of the temple.

God created us to be close to Him and has His arms forever stretched towards us. Click To Tweet

What do I mean? In line with our prayer, God will begin to stir our hearts. From time to time, we might feel a sudden urge to worship or to meditate on the word of God. If we act immediately on those urges, we make progress in our quest to be intimate with God. But if we continually sweep them aside, waiting for more convenient, more “appropriate” times, the urges will reduce in frequency and intensity till we’re back where we were before.

We also need to realise that God has set some parameters for relating with Him in His word. Jesus declared in John 14:6: “I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.” Therefore, we should receive Jesus as our Lord and Saviour and then adhere to the basic disciplines of the faith if we sincerely want to have a meaningful relationship with our Maker. Such disciplines include constant prayer, bible study, fellowship with other believers, service to God and steering clear of sin.

The first step to being close to God is receiving Jesus as our Lord and Saviour. Click To Tweet

When we have taken that first crucial step of accepting Jesus or being born again and we are inculcating the habits outlined above, not just flirting with God when we feel like it or we have some spare time, our hunger for God will be constantly kindled. When we pray about it, God will reveal Himself to us more and more and we will see an outpouring of His presence. That is His promise to us in Jeremiah 29:13:

“And ye shall seek me, and find me, when ye shall search for me with all your heart.”

And as His glory manifests in our lives, we will join the ranks of those who are privileged to share His secrets, who love and serve Him without reservation. That is the reality of enjoying intimacy with God.


Let us use this short poem to pray for that reality to be our portion always:


Help us to have eyes only for You, sweet LORD
To count the world and its pleasures nought
And be wrapped up in Your precious love
Our eyes only on You, only on You, precious LORD

Amen in Jesus’ name.

Scriptural references:
Psalm 27:4 
One thing have I desired of the Lord, that will I seek after; that I may dwell in the house of the Lord all the days of my life, to behold the beauty of the Lord, and to enquire in his temple.
Psalm 42:1-2 
As the hart panteth after the water brooks, so panteth my soul after thee, O God. My soul thirsteth for God, for the living God: when shall I come and appear before God?

The scriptures used in this post are from the King James Version of the Holy Bible unless otherwise stated.)




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I am a university lecturer. I teach Mass Communication, mostly writing courses like Feature and Interpretative Writing, Magazine Article Writing and News Writing, and let’s just say I’ve been doing this for a long time. As you have probably guessed, I am a born-again Christian.


  • israel chinwe Goodness

    This is nice Lord pls help me to feel ur presence in my life more.


    Thank you LORD for inspiring her to write this.

  • Chinecherem Victoria C

    Everytime I read one of your posts, something sparks off in me…this is great and I pray for much more grace in yur life to touch more lives….I owe yu a very big hug ma…

  • In life we should all seek God first, invite him to our hearts, he really wants to stay and he always will, MA you are such an inspiration

  • Mary Umeoguaju

    Thank you ma for this wonderful piece

  • Henrietta Okoye

    Your words are like healings to a wounded soul.. A soul thirsty for God but yet can’t decide on how to start and how to be intimate with God but your words just answered all my questions… God bless you ma

    • Edith Ohaja

      Glory to God, Henrietta! They that seek Him shall find Him whey they seek with all their hearts. So the Holy Book promises. It shall be your portion in Jesus’ name.

  • Chioma

    Ma, more of God’s grace upon your life. God bless you!

  • Oluchi Ekeruche

    Nice one Ma. This post is just really edifying.

  • Ozoemena Jennifer Adaobi

    Nice one ma
    More of God’s Grace upon your life

  • Munachimso Precious

    Thank you Ma for this post. Exactly what I needed at the moment. When my relationship with God is right, my relationships with others become easy. I’m really grateful for this.

  • Ajibo lovelyn onyedikachi

    Mum, your are indeed a great woman full of wisdom and inspiration. I was really inspired by this writeup and I have come to realize how to build my relationship with God. May the almighty God renew his power in me to serve him diligently.

  • Njoku Chioma Grace

    An intimacy with God is the best intimacy one can ever have in life. Ma, like you rightly said, we can only have this intimacy when we have accepted Christ into our lives but sustaining this intimacy with our Father also requires constant study of His word and while we do this, we should also never neglect the place of prayer i.e. our secret place. our quiet time with God is vital in maintaining that intimacy with Him.

  • Njoku Chioma Grace

    God is our ever present help in times of need.most times, it may look as though He is not there or has forgotten about us but He is right there by our side giving us the strength and grace needed to forge ahead. we should learn to always wait and depend on Him, believe and trust in Himand at the set time, He will release His blessings on us for His thoughts towards us are that of good and not of evil to bring us to an expected end.

  • Rose Jonathan

    According to the words of a popular gospel artist, Victoria Orenzo, if I am not burning for God, I don’t know what I am burning for. If my life does not glow for God, I don’t know what I am glowing for. Nothing can ever compare to the joy that comes from knowing you are busy on the Master’s vineyard, basking in his unfailing love.

  • Anyadubalu Oluchi Maryrose

    It pays to be intimate with Christ because He helps His people and whenever you are intimate with Him He direct our every path.

  • onyema chinonyelum cynthia

    Wow! Ma you never seize to amaze me with your write-ups. God bless you for all the lives you change through your work.

  • Ikebuaku Ezinwanne K

    There are so many distractions and entanglements battling with our focus in Christ and just like you said ma we can only build intimacy with God when we have this unquenchable hunger for him in our hearts
    I pray the Lord grants us hunger that cannot be quenched by the momentary pleasures of this world.


    what i yearn for above all is that i be close to Jesus and do his will at all times. lord Jesus, i accept you into my life as my personal lord and saviour and i want to enjoy deep intimacy with you and become someone who knows your heart beat and will do everything to retain this trust in you. i have also learnt that it takes time to build up a relationship with jesus and that it is an everyday task not just some minutes affirmation.

  • Maduabuchi Emmanuel Chidera

    Set me on fire for you Lord I pray.Christ in me the hope of Glory.

  • iheanyi ugochi elizabeth

    being close to God is the best thing one can ever ask for and it is the best gift you can ever have . i have learnt from this post today to hunger for intimacy with God in season and out of season

  • Amana Sharon Umola

    Lord, let my soul hunger and thirst for you. Intimacy with you is my desire.

  • Onyeka Stanley

    Though this is an old post doesn’t mean that the contents are outdated. One of my prayer points has been to develop an intimate relationship with God. Most times we deceive ourselves by claiming to be close to God whereas we know little or nothing about him. Psalm 91:1 echoes it all. The best way to develop an intimate relationship with him is seek him earnestly and diligently in our secret place. He is always there waiting for us to come. He said that he knocks at the door of our heart, whoever hears the knock and opens the door, he’s going to dine with the person. Persistence and consistence is the key.

  • Isaac Nwanneka Oyiridiya

    To create a strong iintimacy with God starts with accepting him in our lives, prayer and reading of his words. We should not be lukewarm, its either we are hot or cold. Let’s be for Jesus and him alone

  • Oshana Oyaku Endurance

    I’ve had an argument over and over before on the matter that, no man can be perfect on earth. Yes, we can be perfect through righteousness, which make us very intimate with God to the extend that we can always feel his glory around us.

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