“Come close to God, and God will come close to you…”
(James 4:8 NLT)
My husband recently spoke on prayer. He gave us a challenge to pray. To pray more and more effectively by using Biblical examples. He used Daniel and the children of Israel in bondage.
I have thought about prayer more since he challenged me to pray more and; pray more effectively. The upstart thought that comes to my mind is that I must come close to God for Him to come close to me. Now, how does one suppose I do this? I would like some ideas on how to come close to God.
We are instructed in God’s Word, “seek Him with your whole heart, and you will find Him.” I believe He will speak to my heart by reading and studying the Word of God with my whole being. Also, as I pray, and pray more effectively. And, as I meditate on Him as the Psalmist demonstrates for us I will come closer to Him.
I think we may have covered this scripture at other times on this blog. But, it just seems so fresh in my mind at this season of life as so many of us are seeking for directives for our lives in a new, personal and fresh way. Change has taken place all around us. ‘Star Wars’ has exploded in front of our very own eyes. How do we as Christian’s respond to the changes in culture, society, and church?
I believe the answers will come from God when I come close enough to Him to hear, see and believe Him! The scripture in its fullness. “Come near to God and he will come near to you. Wash your hands, you sinners, and purify your hearts, you double-minded.”
I am a seeker in this. Therefore, I seek any help from God’s Word as a directive that you might have tried and proven to be of value to you personally!
20 thoughts on “Come where I can see You!”
Berkhof says, “It is the Holy Spirit that takes up His abode in the hearts of the believers, that separates them unto God, and that cleanse them from sin.”
In Gary’s lesson on prayer, among others, one thing that stands out is what he reiterated over and over….You have not because you ask not. They (Isrealites in EXODUS) didn’t get their deliverance, the promise of the Almighty…till they CRIED OUT. When doubt and missing the mark and falling into a sin happens in the Christian life there must be the “CRY OUT” to the Lord. Yes, obedience. Yes, repentance! FIRST, CRY OUT to the Lord. ” I cried unto the LORD with my voice; with my voice unto the LORD did I make my supplication. I poured out my complaint before him; I showed Him my trouble. When my spirit was overwhelmed within me. Hear my prayer, O LORD, give ear to my supplications: in thy faithfulness answer me, and in thy righteousness. And enter not into judgment with thy servant: for in thy sight shall no man living be justified.
Sara asks for concepts from God’s Word on how to draw closer to the Lord. Crying out to Him, confessing our sin(s) and ASKING and seeking His presence.. That means we have to SIT THERE…mouths shut, ears open to hear His voice. We must ‘shut up” long enough to let the voice of the Holy Spirit penetrate our beings, our helter-skelter minds, and “let the Peace of God that passes all understanding garrison our MINDS and HEARTS. Then you will experience God’s peace, which exceeds anything we can understand. His peace will GUARD YOUR MINDS AND HEARTS as you live in Christ Jesus.”
When I have cleansed my mouth and heart, like the angel did to Isaiah with a hot coal from the altar…then maybe I will “see the Lord, high and lifted up”
He replied, “Whether he is a sinner or not, I don’t know. One thing I do know. Once I was blind but now I see!” (A blind man Jesus healed speaking to the Pharisees, John 9:25,) There is a song that sings, “He Was There All The Time Waiting Patiently in Line” . I grieves me to think how many times the presence of the Lord has been awaiting my attention but I had just one more thing to do, thing to do, thing to do. Wait, Lord…just let me finish this..or that…or the other thing. Not Eschewing the presence and nearness of the Lord Jesus Christ as my first and foremost passion…such a waste of time to be doing and running and blabbing and He’s waiting…for the time being. Open my eyes that I may see and be in Your divine presence while there is still time.
Gary, thanks for the quote from Berkhof. It is so healthy to be reminded how the Holy Spirit is living within and works from within to cleanse us from sin and keep us close to God. Very encouraging.
MG, thanks for reminding me again how we have not because we ask not. This awakens my thoughts to Gary’s Biblical accounts when he shared how Daniel and the children of Israel knew the promises of God. That is they understood God had promised yet they still prayed and asked for the promises. They also repented on behalf of their nation and their personal sins.
So often we don’t know what God has promised so we ask amiss. James 4:3 says, “And even when you ask, you don’t get it because your motives are all wrong–you want only what will give you pleasure.” I think this covers your second post, MG.
Nothing like coming clean with the Lord and fessing up as the oldies might say.
Yes, Sara. Now I am asking…”JUST A CLOSER WALK WITH THEE” and NOW… I must go and DO IT ! ASK AND DO… ASK AND ACT
MG, now that takes real focus and real commitment.
The title of the blog, “Come where I can see you” says to me that God wants to communicate and teach me something that I can then, hopefully, apply. Maybe God wants to have a’ face to face’ class with us rather than a long distance, on-line one. Usually one like that is on the professor’s timetable and not ours…a specific time at a specific place…where the Master Teacher asks us questions, looks at our face and expression and sees our heart… and we must respond.
Debi, class is an interesting concept for this blog. If we attend and pay attention we might just Learn something new.
Berkhof words, ” the Holy Spirit that takes up His abode in the hearts of the believers, that separates them unto God,” sure keeps ringing within my heart. I recite the words of Paul over and over from:
I Corith. 2:14-16, NLT”… people who aren’t spiritual can’t receive these truths from God’s Spirit. It all sounds foolish to them and they can’t understand it, for only those who are spiritual can understand what the Spirit means. 15) Those who are spiritual can evaluate all things, but they themselves cannot be evaluated by others. 16) … But we understand these things, for we have the mind of Christ.”
Paul also gives us a picture window of the Spirit of God from Ephesians by instructing us to: “pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests. With this in mind, be alert and always keep on praying for all the Lord’s people.”
Thank you, my husband for instructing me in ways I can see. Am I getting it? It is the Spirit of God that makes the difference whether I come close to God or not?
No man can draw close to the Lord unless the Spirit of the Living God draw him.
True, but ah! We have to position ourselves in the “Drawing Room” to be available for the Spirit to draw us. The Drawing Room in definition is: “a formal reception room.” This word originally meant “with-drawing room” which was where the guests or the family “withdrew” after the meal or dining room. ” (free dict.)
I take it to mean in one sense that it is a place where people go to be “gathered together or to be “received”. This is a little enlightenment as I begin to understand that if I want to be drawn by the Holy Spirit to get “nearer my God to Thee ” then I have to make myself available….as… COME WHERE GOD CAN SEE ME so that I GOD can “COME WHERE I CAN SEE YOU.”
The answer is, inevitably, what Gary preached. You make yourself available in the DRAWING ROOM by OBEYING GOD”S directive to pray.. Plain and simple.
So if I understand what you are saying, Sara, ” It is the Spirit of God that makes the difference whether I come close to God or not?”…God sees us when He sees the Holy Spirit in us. And then we should be able to see Him, our Friend and Comforter, too.
“This Friend is the Spirit of Truth. The godless world can’t take him in because it doesn’t have eyes to see him, doesn’t know what to look for. But you know him already because he has been staying with you, and will even be in you! ” John 14:16-17 Message
Yeah! Good thinking Debi!
Debi writes, “Maybe God wants to have a’ face to face’ class with us rather than a long distance, on-line one. Usually one like that is on the professor’s timetable and not ours…a specific time at a specific place…where the Master Teacher asks us questions, looks at our face and expression and sees our heart… and we must respond.”
Debi, which class do you like best? I think I understand you saying, being in class is better because ‘face and expression and sees our heart” ? Do you think the teacher can see our hearts?
“I surrender every area of my being to You. Use me to be a blessing to others.”
A friend of mine thought this prayer might be a good master key to gaining entrance into The Throne Room where The King of King rules.
I like face to face better because in order for me to really focus I like to hear the teacher, see the teacher and interact with the teacher. Also, often a teacher will teach through hands-on projects…that’s when I really learn to activate the head knowledge. I think an astute teacher sees and reads our hearts through the words of our mouths and our actions. If we can’t apply knowledge to an action or something real that matters, the teacher probably knows it’s not in our heart. We usually do and go where our heart leads.
Sara, your prayer for entrance into the King’s Throne Room reminds me of an exercise that a speaker had us, the class participants, do in a recent school conference I attended. We each had a small round donut shaped magnet w/ a hole in center and were asked to tie a string to it and hold it up as still as we could and see what the magnet did. The magnet just aimlessly turned this way and that, seemingly influenced by the air movement in the room, etc… no particular or consistent patterns to anyone’s. Then we were asked to roll up a square sticky note into a small tube and place it, balanced, into the center of the magnet’s hole. Within seconds everyone’s magnets had aligned the same…all paper tubes pointing in the same direction. We had created a simple compass that could navigate us in the right direction.
I think that my heart is a lot like that empty magnet tied to a string. I have given permission for the King to have a hold on my life and my heart is attached to Him but not always filled and directed by His Holy Spirit. He made me with an emptiness in my heart and a void in my life’s direction that can only be really filled when I am filled and surrendered to Him. When He fills my whole being, then He can use me to be a blessing to others.
That is one of the things I really want for my life’s purpose. Thanks for sharing the powerful prayer.
In coming closer to God what about what Peter says, “Though you have not seen him, you love him; and even though you do not see him now, you believe in him and are filled with an inexpressible and glorious joy,” (1Pet.1:8)
Even though I do not SEE the Holy Spirit, the Teacher, yet I believe that He is instructing me. Although I cannot see Jesus now, I still believe Him and in Him and that His word is my instruction and directive and commandment for holy living. And though I cannot see Him now, I will see Him when I stand before Him at the end.
The Bible study I attended, in the Spring, was titled, “Pursuing More of Jesus”, by Ann Graham Lotz. In one of her lessons, she impressed upon the listeners to pray. She said, “Jesus prayed and if He felt the need to pray, how much more should I/we pray?” Some of the following scriptures she used were in Luke. I will leave the chapters and verses, for anyone to look up and ponder upon. (3:21, 5:16, 6:12, 9:18, 9:28, 11:1) Out of all these verses, I believe Luke 6:12, speaks to me. Read with me, “One of those days Jesus went out to a mountainside to pray, and spent the night praying to God.” I have to be honest….I don’t believe I have ever ‘spent the whole night’, praying. Gary, thanks for the challenge to pray. After reading these verses, I know Jesus felt, as still does, that prayer is important.