The pleasure of being known by God

Tony ministryThis semester, I'm studying Knowing God by J.I. Packer with one of the Bible studies I help lead. Each week we look at a couple chapters from the book and spend time discussing what it means to know God rather than simply know about God. This has been one of the times I most look forward to in my week, because I’m constantly reminded what a privilege and pleasure it is to know God. It’s been amazing to walk with these guys and meditate on the fact that we were made to know God; that eternal life is knowing God (John 17:3)l; that the greatest joy, pleasure, and contentment in life is knowing God (Jeremiah 9:23-24); and that God's greatest delight is giving us a knowledge of Himself (Hosea 6:6). It's such a delight to my heart to think that my knowledge of God is simply a matter of his grace. I don’t make friends with God but he makes me his friend. I know him by faith because he first called me by grace. God looked on me from eternity past and foresaw all my struggles, shortcomings, and sins but still said, “I want him; I’m willing to send my Son to have him in my family.” So then what matters supremely is not the fact that I know God but the greater fact that He knows me. My name is graven on his hands. I am never out of his mind. My knowledge of him depends solely on his sustained initiative in knowing me. I know him because he first knew me, and he continues to know me, love me, count me as his friend. His care for me never falters.

- Emmett Richardson