Christ, the Nearness of God

(The devotional Teach Me To Pray is full of wonderful words from Andrew Murray that encourage us in our spiritual lives. Here is one of my favorites.)

Draw close to God, and God will draw close to you. James 4:8

It has been said that the holiness of God is the union of God’s infinite distance from sinful man with God’s infinite nearness in His redeeming grace. Faith must always seek to realize both the distance and the nearness.

In Christ, God has come very near to man. Now the command comes: If you want God to come still nearer, you must draw nearer to Him. The promised nearness of Christ Jesus expressed in the promise, “And be sure of this: I am with you always” (Matt 28:20), can only be experienced as we draw near to Him.

This mean that at the beginning of each new day, we must yield ourselves to His holy presence. It means a voluntary, intentional, and whole-hearted turning away from the world to wait on God to make Himself known to our souls. It means making time to allow him to reveal Himself. It is impossible to expect the abiding presence of Christ with us through the day without the daily exercise of strong desire and child-like trust in His word.

As you pray, let these words come to you with new meaning each morning: “Draw close to God, and God will draw close to you.” Wait patiently and He will speak in divine power: “I am with you always.”

How Long Are We Here For?

On Tuesday I posted a blog about our purpose in life. Little did I know that within 24 hours of posting that blog two friends would pass away.

Tuesday evening a good friend went outside in the evening for a quick errand. When he did not return, his wife went looking for him. He was laying in the snow and was already gone.

Wednesday in the early morning hours, a lady (whom I know from church), rolled over in bed and discovered that her husband had died in his sleep.

Both of these deaths were completely unexpected!

We cannot know the day nor the hour that God calls us from this life into the next.

We can know our purpose here in this life. It is not to live as many days as we possibly can. It is not to accumulate as much stuff as we possibly can. It is to “love God and serve Him will all our might.”

One friend never attended church and one did. Church attendance does not indicate salvation. I do not know where either of these men were, in their relationship with God. However, their opportunity to make a decision for Christ is now past.

Friend, do not wait. You do not know at what hour God will call you from this life. Only a commitment to Christ can ensure your next life will be in Heaven, surrounded by the love of God.

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I have thought of this parable many times today: Luke Chapter 12 –

13 Someone in the crowd said to him, “Teacher, tell my brother to divide the inheritance with me.”

14 Jesus replied, “Man, who appointed me a judge or an arbiter between you?” 15 Then he said to them, “Watch out! Be on your guard against all kinds of greed; life does not consist in an abundance of possessions.”

16 And he told them this parable: “The ground of a certain rich man yielded an abundant harvest. 17 He thought to himself, ‘What shall I do? I have no place to store my crops.’

18 “Then he said, ‘This is what I’ll do. I will tear down my barns and build bigger ones, and there I will store my surplus grain. 19 And I’ll say to myself, “You have plenty of grain laid up for many years. Take life easy; eat, drink and be merry.”’

20 “But God said to him, ‘You fool! This very night your life will be demanded from you. Then who will get what you have prepared for yourself?’

21 “This is how it will be with whoever stores up things for themselves but is not rich toward God.”

This very day reach out to Jesus.