During the last few years, I have been more focused on internal spiritual growth with devotional materials rather than intense theology, I have come to experience the love that God has for me, and it makes me want to love others more.
I remember, about a decade ago, I was deeply reading reformed theology, and had just finished John Owens book, “The death of death in the death of Christ,” when I had a powerful experience in the Holy Spirit. I was sitting in my living room and the Spirit feel upon me with such power, I feel to my hands and knees. I felt an overwhelming sense of God’s love for me. Then I felt a hand against my back, as if Jesus was right there next to me. 3 times I heard Him say, “Oshea, I have forgiven you of all your sins.” Two things were impressed on me. One, was Jesus’ love and forgiveness for me. The second was that Jesus said this to me, because despite the theology I was reading, it was not penetrating into my soul and producing spiritual growth as it ought. Unfortunately, due to my stubbornness, I did not immediately grasp the importance of this and I took too long to correct this (several years). But by God’s grace, because He is faithful to work His sanctification in me just like He promised, I understand the importance of such things and priorities them much better.
This is one thing I would tell my younger self to prioritize first, and that is spiritual strength above everything else. Always pursue theology, but make sure you get spiritual strength as a foundation before diving into intense theology.