And this is eternal life, that they know you, the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom you have sent. John 17:3
When I was a kid I loved collecting sports cards. I had binders full and remember looking up how much money they were worth and then trading them with friends. My favorite thing about the cards was that they had every player’s stats on the back. So I had most of their numbers memorized. However, even though I knew a bunch of stuff about them, did that mean that I actually knew them as people?
Obviously, the answer is no! It would’ve been a total lie if I claimed to know these players on a personal level just because I had a bunch of their stats memorized. However, I think a similar tendency is alive and well in the Church.
So many of us in the Church know a lot of information about God. We know stats. We have verses memorized. We read books. And the list goes on. But how many of us know God beyond knowledge about Him? I love Scripture and wholeheartedly believe it’s critical for Christians to have an intimate understanding of it. However, knowing about God is no substitute for actually knowing Him on a personal level.
In today’s verse, Jesus was praying in the Garden of Gethsemane, saying: “And this is eternal life, that they know you, the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom you have sent.” You see, eternal life isn’t simply going to a place called heaven when we die—it’s knowing the Father and Jesus Himself.
True life is found in a personal relationship with the true God. So, are you in a sports-card relationship with God? Do you know about Him? Or do you know Him personally?
If not, pray this prayer with me: God, I know things about you, but I don’t feel like I truly know You. And that’s what I want. I want to know You like Moses did and like the disciples knew Jesus. Holy Spirit, please introduce Yourself to my heart, soul, and mind in a way I’ve never experienced before, so I can lead others into an authentic, intimate relationship with You as well.