1. Show up. Every day, no matter what you have on your schedule, no matter how you feel. Set aside time with God and bring His letter to you (the Bible) and your journal. It doesn't have to be a super long time, but just some private time. This isn't legalism, this is a discipline. Mark had some private places he would always go to meet with God. He used our treehouse or even his closet. He asked God to give him that special relationship.
2. Worship and Praise. This may seem awkward at first, but do it anyway. It doesn't have to be in song, but use the gifts God gave you. Draw something, say something, write something, dance something, think something....Enjoy how Awesome God is to you. Often Mark started with a Psalm and this prompted his own ideas of praise.
3. Acknowledge, in light of God's holiness (you have just praised Him, so this will be more obvious) how you fall short. This time can feel like a nice shower after a hot sweaty day. What a relief to tell God you are messy, can't handle your life and need Him to clean you up and set you right.
4. Live Loved. Have fun with God! Mark was a goofball and didn't take himself seriously. Fully enjoy the fact that He loves you. Receive His Grace. You are forgiven, a child of His, His treasure. Meditate on this. Mark was ridiculously focused on the fact that God delighted in him, rejoiced over him and wanted an intimate relationship with him. Mark felt special to God because he believed, despite his sin, God had invited him to be in a relationship with him.
5. Seek Beauty. Expect God to love you through His Creation and His people. Expect God to show you He loves you throughout the day. Watch and see. Pay attention. You will be amazed at how He has been shouting out His love to you.
6. Encourage Others. Almost every day, Mark would ask God to help him love like Jesus. He would often ask God to specifically place someone in his path for him to encourage. I am quite certain often that blessed person was you and me. I felt so loved by Mark. He believed that the way to deepen his love for God, was to love others. So ask. Ask God who needs some encouragement today and see who He brings into your life.
(re-post from 7/10/14)
To learn more about Mark's amazing relationship with God and how you can have one too, please click here to buy The Extraordinary Ordinary Life of Mark Rodriguez