I am so encouraged by your desire to have an “intimate relationship with the Lord!” This should be the “natural desire” of every born-again believer for the new nature (that we received when we trusted in Christ for salvation) causes us to love God. Yet it is God’s love FOR US that causes us to LOVE HIM. “In this is love, not that we loved God, but that He LOVED US and sent His Son to be the propitiation for our sins…We LOVE HIM because HE FIRST LOVED US” (1st John 4:10 & 19…NKJV).  

In order to cultivate an “intimate relationship with Him” we must continue to focus on His love for us. We are exhorted to do this in Jude 21, “But you, beloved…keep yourselves in the love of God.” This does NOT mean, as some have suggested, that we are to KEEP LOVING GOD. We saw in 1st John 4:19 that “we love Him because He first loved us.” It is HIS LOVE that produces OUR LOVE FOR HIM so we must keep HIS LOVE before us at all times. John, who wrote those words, learned this truth early on and thus he constantly referred to himself as “The disciple whom Jesus loved” (see John 13:23; 19:26; 20:2; 21:7, 20). The Apostle Paul also kept this blessed truth before him, “I have been crucified with Christ; it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me; and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, WHO LOVED ME and gave Himself for me.” If we begin to focus on our love for Him, we will surely fail (see John 13:36-38 with 18:15-18, 25-27), but if we focus on Christ’s love for us, we will never fail (see Jude 24-25).

Regarding “knowing the Holy Spirit,” it is vital to see that the Spirit of God has taken a place of lowly service and it is not His desire to speak of Himself or to have us occupied with Him. Listen to the Apostle John’s words where the Lord Jesus speaks of the Holy Spirit’s mission in the life of believers:

“These things I have spoken to you while being present with you. But the Helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in My name, He will TEACH YOU ALL THINGS, AND BRING TO YOUR REMEMBRANCE ALL THAT THAT I SAID TO YOU…But when the Helper comes….He will TESTIFY OF ME….However, when He, the Spirit of truth, has come, He will GUIDE YOU INTO ALL TRUTH; for He will NOT SPEAK ON HIS OWN AUTHORITY, but whatever He hears He will speak….He will GLORIFY ME, for He will TAKE OF WHAT IS MINE AND DECLARE IT TO YOU” (John 14:25-26; 15:26; 16:13-14).

These passages make it crystal-clear that the Holy Spirit’s mission is to put Christ before our hearts and minds. He wants us to “grow in grace, and in the knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ” (2nd Peter 3:18). As we sit down with our Bible in our hands, we should yield ourselves to the Holy Spirit and thus be “filled with the Spirit” (Ephesians 5:18), so that He can guide us into the truth of Christ. We are told to “Let the word of Christ dwell in your richly” (Colossians 3:16) and this will be accomplished if yield to the indwelling Spirit and allow Him to do His work of “taking up the things of Christ and showing them to us.” One of my favorite verses that teaches us this truth is 2nd Corinthians 3:18, “But we all, with unveiled face, beholding as in a mirror the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from glory to glory, just as by the Spirit of the Lord.” Think of it dear fellow-believer; we need only open the sacred scriptures with a heart desiring to know the Lord better, and the Holy Spirit will gladly present the glories of Christ to us. And as He does, we will (unconsciously) be changed into the very image of Christ! We will GROW SPIRITUALLY and thus CHRIST WILL BE GLORIFIED! Our “intimate relationship” with the Lord Jesus will develop day by day as we “sit at His feet and hear His Word” (see Luke 10:39). We will find that this is the secret of a victorious Christian life. His love for us will “keep us from FALLING” (letting Him down) and we will enjoy rich fellowship with Him and the Father (see 1st John 1:1-4) as the Spirit does His work in us.  (479.1)  (DO)