Raise your hand if you like to spend time with your Lord? You know, in “daily devotions” and times of prayer? According to Paul:
“God, who first ordered ‘light to shine in darkness, has flooded our hearts with his light. We now can enlighten men only because we can give them knowledge of the glory of God, as we see it in the face of Jesus Christ.” (II Corinthians 4:6)
The only way our Father’s wisdom and light is going to shine in our hearts is by spending time with Him; in His presence; during our times of communion and fellowship. I hope all of us realize that this is only available after we seek Yahweh and allow His Son to come into our lives. But, by golly, after that, the marvelous treasure of the Holy Spirit begins to work in our lives, teaching us and building us up in our faith! Faith to believe and act on the truth we find.
If we truly yearn to experience our Father’s light, we need to be in His presence every day. Not during times when we feel inspired and “moved” to seek Him out. No, it must become a daily routine. And, to clue you in on a secret, once you begin this routine, you discover that isn’t a chore, but a tremendous blessing! There is not doubt that “He rewards those who earnestly and diligently seek Him out!”
I don’t remember where I found it, but someone wisely stated that “The gospel brings a man to God, but his devotions keep him close.” The apostle James understood this when he wrote, “Come close to God, and he will come close to you . . .” A big “Amen!” to that! As we come closer to our Father, we will find that our He is closer than ever. In our daily interactions with Him, our desire should be to draw
As we draw closer to Him, we will find that He moves in even closer than ever. In our daily interactions with Him, our desire should be to draw close to His heart; to understand more about Him; to obey His commands, and to hold on to His promises.
Some haven’t reached that point. Do you really want God’s help or not? If you are going to be wandering around filled with inward reservations, as James explained, you will be tossed around like a wave of the sea, aimless and fickle. Carried around by the wind one moment and driven back the next. Holy moly, if that is what you are like, you will never receive anything from God, and your life will be lead by divided loyalties. In fact, you will seek to separate yourself from God as much as possible.
Take the time to draw near. Interestingly, the expression “draw near” was associated with the priesthood in Israel. Before approaching Yahweh’s presence, the priest had to be washed physically and be ceremonially clean. He had to bathe, wear the proper garments, and offer the appropriate sacrifices. His own heart had to be right with God. At that point, he could “draw near” to God on the people’s behalf. Eventually, this “drawing near” was seen in anyone who approached the Lord’s presence in worship and prayer.
Most of us realize that our Father wants us to come closer with true and pure hearts, and that is the purpose o our daily devotions. The writer to the Hebrew church understood this:
“Let us draw near with true hearts and fullest confidence, knowing that our inmost souls have been purified by the sprinkling of his blood just as our bodies are cleansed by the washing of clean water” (Hebrews 10:22).
The same way those priests prepared themselves to be near God, we should prepare ourselves to worship Him.
After salvation, our spirit begins to grow, to mature. Like Enoch, we will naturally want to walk with God. Like Asaph, we will want to be near our Father. Oh, what a glorious thought! Like the Psalmist we can cry, “It is good for me to draw near to God; I have put my trust in the Lord God and made Him my refuge, that I may tell of all Your works” (Psalm 73:28). Like the disciples, we will hunger, to yearn, to pray effectively. Like the Psalmist, we will cry, “O taste and see that the Lord our God is good! Blessed are those who run to him.”
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