Bible Verse: “Then God said, ‘Let us make mankind in our image, in our likeness, so that they may rule over the fish in the sea and the birds in the sky, over the livestock and all the wild animals, and over all the creatures that move along the ground.’” (Genesis 1:26)

Scripture Reading: Genesis 1:26-2:25

This is a purposeful, carefully worded prayer. A prayer made in the intimacy and communion of the Trinity. To request that a creation be made in the likeness of the creator, and to purpose to bestow on that creation the right to rule over everything that’s already been created, is nothing less than God expressing His intention to have a child. Indeed, Adam is declared a son of God in Luke 3:38. Here then is one of the finest principles of prayer: it is intimate communication.

Surely everyone who has heard God speak to them knows that, for He speaks right to your soul. He doesn’t speak idle words of chitchat, like a friend who has the gift of gab and goes on and on about the most trivial of matters. No, God speaks to your inner being, and He speaks words of profound meaning. Here then is another great principle of prayer: what God speaks, he speaks with intention.

The implications of these two principles are huge, for dialogue with God mandates reciprocity. Otherwise it is only a monologue aimed at God, not a full dialogue. So, if He speaks intimately and purposefully, we ought also to speak intimately and purposefully.

And why shouldn’t we? He knows everything about us, from our greatest desires and fears to the number of hairs on our heads. Indeed, Jesus expects us to speak intimately. Did He not say, “If you remain in me and my words remain in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be given you” (John 15:7)? Indeed, it’s the truest of intimacies that His Spirit doesn’t live above us or below us (as our relatives might) or even beside us (as our spouse might) but within us! The Word speaks of this most intimate communion every time we read of ourselves as “in Christ.”

We all know what it is to have an intimate conversation. It’s not so much a quiet conversation between two married adults. Intimacy in communication can happen between any sentient beings. It is to talk openly and without pretense. It is to talk without defences and without walls. No physical walls, no emotional walls, no mental walls. No distance, no barriers. To be totally open about hurts, disappointments, and grievances, and to be totally passionate about things that really matter. Openness and trust. That’s intimacy in communication. That’s how He speaks within the Godhead. That’s how He purposes to speak to us, and how He purposes to teach us to speak to Him.

— Marcus Verbrugge in Beginnings: Growing in Prayer Through Genesis © 2015 by Marcus Verbrugge. Used by permission.

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