“Come near to God and he will come near to you.” James 4:8
Pastor Lee invited me to guest write on his Instagram ministry account. He provided the photo image (he’s a photographer), I wrote the quote and the message. That was kind of fun. The message is below:
▪”Draw near.” I searched the Greek word in this verse to see what it actually means.
ἐγγιεῖ means: to draw near.
I thought I’d find some deep spiritual variation of that concept. But, it is translated exactly how it is meant. So, I went back to the verse to understand what it truly says. When we get close to God, He does the same. Would that mean that He was away until we drew near? No. He NEVER MOVED. We are the ones who travel. At the moment we desire closeness, and begin to move in, He makes sure to close the gap. Even though, He is right where he’s always been, He doesn’t just stay in one place and let us travel the whole distance. But I can’t get near looking toward the things that distanced me in the first place. I have to let them go. The end of that verse reads:
“Cleanse your hands, you sinners, and purify your hearts, you double-minded.”
It sounds harsh, but that is because those things separate us from Him and if they continue to pull on us, we’ll stay away.
The beautiful thing is that He isn’t that far even while we are wrestling with these things.
“…that they should seek God, and perhaps feel their way toward him and find him. Yet he is actually not far from each one of us,”
He is always poised to move in our direction. We need to take the first step.▪
@pastorfromdownunder on Instagram.
Love Always ???
After I made this and framed it, I thought I’d have a profound and meaningful post to go with it. But, I don’t. I can’t add any more layers to that snippet of Scripture. I think it pretty much expresses what I want to say without expounding unnecessarily.
At church, the “Praise Project” was announced 3 weeks ago. The church wanted to give anyone the opportunity to express artistically, a verse, thought, prayer, that resonated spiritually with them. The church will then display these pieces on Easter. I debated creating anything. I felt a little prompting to make something, but this verse isn’t even a favorite. I actually looked for a verse that started with “The”. I was more concerned with the layout versus the content. I’m sure I’ll get asked what this verse means to me. Up until Tuesday, it didn’t mean anything, really. Not in the sense that I consciously associated it with anything in my life personally. But here it is. So, I read and re-read it. I still don’t have anything to add to it’s message, LOL. It’s perfect, the way it is.
Everything that it says, I will say is true for me. He definitely is my Strength. I could have never made it to this point, without Him. I tried; I have given a lot of my strength to the pursuit of loving God, but, I’m still weak, even in my best moments. He is worthy, but in the past, I have given my heart to the here and now. When I was in the midst of it, nothing else could make as much sense as what I felt at the moment. I was all in, and completely engrossed. During all of it, He was the harmony. He was the sweet music. Nothing ever sounded better. In the end, He came in and saved me. I tried. I wanted to be His, but I had moments that I gave in to my wants and desires. How would I ever inherit salvation if He didn’t purposefully swoop in and rescue me? I’d have missed the beauty and the adventure. He never intended for me to forego that. So, He will always be my strength, my song and my salvation.