[The father] said to [the older brother] Son, you are always with me, and all that I have is yours.

Luke 15:31 New King James Version

A life with God gives context to how we live for God.

If we live for God without first learning how to live with God, our identity is defined by what we do, and how well we do it, and how God will judge us against certain benchmarks that reward or punish our performance. This line of thinking leads to two divergent emotions which can be painful and confusing. We will swell with pride when we feel we have done well but wallow in self-pity when we have not done well. It creates a "yo-yo" relationship where you feel God loves you one day and does not love you the next.

Intimacy before activity is the nature of a life with God.

It is when you gravitate to God for who He is and not about what you can get from or do for Him. It is not a transactional relationship, but a transformational relationship with God. By transformation, we are referring to an authentic passion for God and giving Him full access to change everything in our lives so that we truly reflect our identity in Christ.

A yearning for a life with God opens your eyes to the truth of His goodness and unfailing love despite your flaws and failures, and this makes yielding to God easy and light.

God gives before He ever asks of you.

In His remarkable parable of the father with two sons (Luke 15:11-32), Jesus tells us about our primary spiritual posture in a relationship with God is to first receive before we serve. We have a generous Father but many of us are poor receivers, and this makes ministry and service hard and draining because we are giving out what we have not received ourselves.

Knowing your Father God's great and generous love opens your heart to receive faith for your fear, strength for your weaknesses, joy for your sorrow and healing for your hurts. In other words, instead of worrying whether you live up to God's expectations, a life with God gets you ready to live an amazing life for God.