One of my favorite things about God is that he speaks. The true heart of the prophetic celebrates his loving nature through leaning in to hear what’s on his heart. This action of leaning in requires a heart posture of intimacy. Such intimacy assumes that God is present, engaged and listening. It sees God as relational, available and longing to be pursued.

The intimate ones: Mary, John the beloved, David. You’ll recognize them by the unparalleled access they have to the heart of God, occupying places of trust where God reveals to them his secrets (Amos 3:7; Psalm 25:14). We disqualify ourselves from this level of relationship with the lie that it’s for a chosen few. In truth the intimate ones lay aside everything to be lovers and God responds giving them the very thing they are asking for: more of himself (James 4:8).

Yes we are to desire spiritual gifts (1 Corinthians 14:1), but it is in the pursuit of intimacy that we have our greatest triumphs. Intimacy creates the sweetest overflow of the Holy Spirit into our lives, our callings, our ministries and our giftings. But it can never be pursued for this reason; intimacy must be pursued for intimacy’s sake: to know him and be fully known.

A number of years ago, after being hurt by church and very confused about the nature of God, I discovered true intimacy. I decided to come before God as I was: raw and broken, giving him the absolute truth. I had no plan, no profound words, no strength, nothing to give him, bar one thing: honesty.

I later realized that in that seemingly insignificant moment I had unintentionally hit upon the key to intimacy: me giving my unhidden self in exchange for his self and choosing to do this again and again. Intimacy demands that I come as I am in trust that he will receive me that way, its full disclosure.

Since that day nothing but intimacy will satisfy me. I love prophetic ministry and become so excited when I see the power of God on display but I live for the moments when he reveals himself to me, when I get a glimpse of his nature or hear the tone of his whisper.

When I pursue him for the sake of being with him, his voice becomes clearer to me than crystal. We plead with God to answer our prayers, to use us, to speak through us, but what if like Mary we chose to sit at his feet? What if we chose intimacy and friendship with God over everything else, and from that place of being go into all the world?

I urge you to get real and raw with God, to let intimacy take a hold of you. Try it. And as you pursue him solely for the privilege of knowing him, watch as the secret things of God begin to manifest themselves everywhere you look.

The invitation to intimacy awaits you: will you lean in?

By Lisa Clarke