Are You Afraid of Intimacy?

Intimacy can be scary. Into Me See. How many people do you let look into you and really see who you are?

I’m guessing  not many. 

God is a touchy/feely kind of God. He’s hands on. Intimate. Maybe that frightens you because you’ve been intimate with someone and been hurt. I get that. But God never mishandles our hearts. He’s gentle. Easy. Soft.

Let’s go back to Genesis–meaning beginning–to creation. I’m a God-made-the-earth-and-us kind of gal, maybe you are too. Maybe not. I believe Jesus spoke everything into existence with only a word. 

“In the beginning there was the Word. The Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was with God in the beginning. All things were made by Him, and nothing was made without Him.” John 1:1-3 NCV

“Him” is Jesus. The Word. 

But He created Man with 
His hands and His breath.

“And the LORD God formed man of the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living being.” Genesis 2:7 NJKV
God prepared for fellowship/intimacy with us.
God planned, prepared and proceeded to create everything Man would need to dwell on the Earth.  He still plans, prepares, and proceeds with everything we need before He puts us in specific places. Not just spiritual places, but in our day to day living. If we seek His will out, we’ll find that career, job, ministry, church and the list goes on. 
To be intimate you have to spend quality time with one you’re getting to know. I know what my husband is thinking most of the time. I know what he will and will not want to do. Why? Because I’ve spent hours getting to know what he likes and doesn’t. 
Think of your child, if you have one. On a playground with dozens, I can pick my child’s cry or voice out of all of them, and my children know their Mama’s voice. Why? Because I know them. I’ve talked to them, listened to them. We’re bonded. 
God communed with Adam and Eve. He walked with them in the Garden, brought Adam the animals to name just to marvel at what he’d call them. There was relationship. And there were a few rules.
Eve and Adam sinned. And then they hid.
After their eyes were opened they realized they were naked and immediately they hid themselves and made garments of fig leaves.
Intimacy before God means a naked heart. Vulnerable. Open. Showing every flaw.
God asked where they were. Not that He didn’t know already, but He was giving them a chance to fess up. And God’s relational. He wanted a conversation. He wanted the opportunity to show them some mercy. He could’ve wiped them off the face of the earth. But He didn’t.
He’s patient. Kind. He’s never “had it” with us. Oh, He disciplines us, but it’s because He loves us. God gave consequences to the serpent, to Adam, and to Eve. One of those consequences was, they had to leave paradise. Go out and toil, work, the whole childbirth thing which I am still a little bitter about. 
He put His hands on them before He sent them out.
The first animal to ever be killed, was by God Himself–“The LORD God made clothes from animal skins for the man and his wife and dressed them.” Genesis 3:21 
He knew fig leaves wouldn’t be durable or proper for the life they were about to lead.
We can’t provide for ourselves. About the best we can do alone, is dress in fig leaves. 
God shows love and intimacy even in consequences.
He still wants intimacy with you and me today. He wants to breathe into us and provide for us. Commune. 
He wants to wrap His arms around us, listen to us, collect our tears, wipe the eyes of our broken hearts, laugh with us, cheer us on as we make strides forward. 
He wants to be on our minds when we wake, the last thought before we drift off to a peaceful rest at night. He wants to fill us with joy.
He simply wants His hands on us. 

I’m hosting at Living By Grace today. I’d love for you to come by and chat about intimacy. 

Why do you think people have a hard time with intimacy? With God and other people?

22 thoughts on “Are You Afraid of Intimacy?

  1. It's difficult to be vulnerable. To let our deepest desires hang out there for all to see. That level of intimacy takes an incredible amount of trust.

    Thanks for the encouragement today, Jess. I'm in need of it for sure!

  2. Wonderful post, Jess! Love the definition – into me see. Agreeing with Heather on this one, it IS difficult to be vulnerable. Even though we know God knows all about us, I think we are comfortable wearing the facade that we're okay – if only for everyone else to see. Ugh! Drawing on past experiences of being hurt also puts up that wall. Even though God doesn't hurt us, it's something we struggle to overcome. Good stuff here! Thanks for the post!

  3. Kim

    "God shows love and intimacy even in consequences." What a beautiful sentiment. I have never thought of God's love in this way. Thank you for such lovely thoughts on this Wednesday morning…

  4. Lovely post. Being intimate means being vulnerable and easy to hurt. We don't like being hurt, so we don't get intimate.
    Great points in the post too. 🙂

  5. I think, like you said, it comes from being hurt in the past. I like how you said, God is a touchy/feely kind of God. Made me smile.

  6. Great post. Intimacy means being vulnerable and opening yourself up to the deepest kind of scrutiny. It can be a scary thing.
    I think that many times we don't even know ourselves. I know that God knows us better than we know ourselves. Opening our self up to God means seeing ourselves as He sees us. Warts and all.
    Good food for thought. Thanks for sharing.

  7. Fear.

    I get tired of dressing in fig leaves.

    Often I feel I'm overly intimate and set myself up for getting hurt. Through the years I've learned a ton about setting boundaries. Thankful I need not set any with God.
    ~ Wendy

  8. Lovely post. Perhaps we have a hard time letting people get that close because when we let those walls down, we've given them all the weapons they need to hurt us badly. And the lower the walls come down, the more mortal the wounds can be.

  9. Morning everyone!

    I'm loving your answers, fear, not knowing ourselves, tired of dressing in fig leaves and getting hurt by being too intimate.

    Awesome answers! All true. 🙂

    Kim, so glad you came by and decided to hang out! Prop up your feet. Welcome!

  10. Love that thought – intimacy before God means a naked heart. I think it's hard to be vunerable and open – I think we are often afraid our true selves will be rejected so we sort of hide. But how refreshing it is to know God (and close friends) know the real us and love us anyway.

  11. So beautifully said! God loving us, despite all of our faults, foibles, and insecurities is something we so easily take for granted sometimes. I praise Him daily for the tender mercy He shows me!

    Removing the "mask" and dropping the facade should be easy before our Creator, yet we think we can outsmart Him sometimes.

  12. I don't have a problem so much with God, as i trust Him. But people, yeah, I shy away unless I'm very close to them–like family.

  13. No one knows me better than God, and He's seen my naked heart.

    Loved your line on that.

    I believe intimacy can only be shared with someone you love and trust. Some people share everything (their most intimate details) with everyone…they don't get it.

    Awesome post.

  14. Lovely, lovely post! Slightly scary, but totally awesome how deeply God sees into us…

    I think you nailed it in your post when you talked about being intimate with someone and being hurt – I think that's where a lot of people's troubles with intimacy stem from. And sometimes in our heads, we equate God with people…but He won't ever let us down…which, frankly, rocks.

    Thanks for such an awesome post!

  15. Great post, Jess! I think sometimes people have a hard time with intimacy depending of their upbringing.
    This is a great reminder!

  16. FEAR. Fear of rejection, fear of hurt, fear of what others might think of us.

    None of those concerns make any sense with God, who will never reject us, never hurt us, and who knows us better than we know ourselves anyway.

    Great post!

  17. Great post, Jessica! Intimacy means other people might see that we're not perfect. That's never a fun thing to do, even if we know good things are on the other side.

  18. We cheat ourselves out of part of the relationship when we try to hide part of ourselves from God. Great post, Jessica.

  19. "Into Me See."
    I like that translation of intimacy, Jessica.
    Intimacy is just plain risky … what if I open up to someone and they don't reciprocate? Or they aren't trustworthy with the real (now vulnerable)me?
    This was a beautiful, compelling post. I love your writer's voice.

  20. Lovely hand photos; I like the last one especially. I'm a God-made-the-earth-and-us kind of gal too. 🙂

  21. How hard it is sometimes to stop throwing obstacles in our own way when trying to reach out to God.

  22. This is probably a stereotypical male answer, but…I don't fear intimacy (I don't think I do), I just don't know how to do it. I wonder sometimes if something is wrong with me. It feels great to get close to someone, but my mind (or something) just hits it's limit and stops.


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