I lived in Nashville for almost twelve years. During that time I met some famous to semi-famous people. Some came to the churches where I served. I used to lean over to a famous person in church service and say, "I'm going to tell people that I once sang with ________." It was semi-true.
However, I don't know any of these famous people. I may have been to some of their houses but they have never been to mine. I may be able to call them by name but they would not be able to pick me out of a crowd of two.
Yes, I can say I have talked with them. Yes, I can say they responded to my comments or questions. I cannot say that I really know them because they don't know me.
I can pretend. I can drop names of famous people when I talk with others. I can tell of my experiences with them and act as if they were common when they were actually very brief. I might even be able to convince some people that I know these people.
A brief encounter does not make you life long friends. It does not mean you have a relationship at all. It doesn't matter if you can tell a story of an interaction with that person. It doesn't matter if you can tell something about that person. If you really know someone they know you right back.
So, let's pretend we know the Lord. We can give a time when we served Him. We can tell of a time when we heard Him say something to us. We can tell stories all about Him. Others may believe we know Him if they hear us speak of Him. They may look at what we have done or what we have given and conclude that we know Him.
In the end it won't matter if other people say that we know Him. It won't matter if we point to our brief encounters with Him and claim that we know Him. The only thing that will matter is if He knows us.
I have stopped pretending I know famous people.
Matthew 7:21-23 (NIV)
21 "Not everyone who says to me, 'Lord, Lord,' will enter the kingdom of heaven, but only he who does the will of my Father who is in heaven.22 Many will say to me on that day, 'Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name, and in your name drive out demons and perform many miracles?'
23 Then I will tell them plainly, 'I never knew you. Away from me, you evildoers!'