Click above to listen to the title track Draw Near from my third album. If you enjoy, check out the CD or MP3 Album, Sheet Music, or visit iTunes, Amazon, or Spotify).
Are you feeling near to God or distant from God right now?
As I wrote this question I was reminded that in my faith journey, one or the other is true. For me, answering “somewhere in between” is not an honest answer. In reality, I either lean toward feeling near or distant. Some spiritual word pictures for “Near” could be Sanctuary, Mountain Top, or Still Waters. Some for “Distant” could be Desert, Valley, or Stormy Seas.
In this post I am challenging myself to name ten ideas which help with drawing near to God. I hope some of these will help you in this quest, or at least trigger your own idea to apply. These are in no particular order, and are worded as personal affirmations…
1) I will meditate on James 4:8 “Draw near to God, and He will draw near to you.”
2) I will practice child-like faith, giving a random act of kindness or a hug to someone.
3) I will ask God to show me how much He loves me, and watch to see what happens.
4) I will unplug from technology for five minutes to pray for two and listen for three.
5) I will surrender a desire or issue to God, and ask for His wisdom and direction.
6) I will share extravagant love with someone, by asking for or giving forgiveness.
7) I will speak words of life and encouragement to someone who could use a lift.
8) I will pause to count my blessings, instead of focusing on my frustrations.
9) I will serve someone through a hospital visit, a warm meal, or other special need.
10) I will listen to Scripture inspired piano to experience God’s presence.
Sometimes I need to focus more on Being (pursuing God to know Him better and listening for instruction), and sometimes I need to focus more on Doing (giving God’s love, grace and forgiveness to others). Practicing being and doing draws me nearer to God, and then He fulfills His wonderful promise to draw near to me.
How is God inviting you to draw near to Him?
Heidi Viars says
It’s been cold here, too cold to walk (or at least that has been my excuse). This morning I bundled up despite and stepped out to follow the invitation of my Father to draw near to Him outside. What I found was the confirmation of James 4:8. Indeed, God draws near to the ones who draw near to Him. He met me on the cold paths, and opened my eyes to His marvelous provisions of love. Snow, billions of single fakes, sparkled like a treasure of diamonds in the early sunlight. As it crunched under my feet, I marveled at their Designer. It felt as if glimpses of the heart of God lay before me in the vast blanket of the snow.
In seeking God’s presence, not only do we find His heart for us, but also become aware of His deep desire for others to know Him.
I am grateful God is patient and continually reminds us of the importance of loving Him and others!
Thank you for your constant encouragement. Your gift of music helps me to slow down and draw near to God … and hear Him say, “Draw near to me!”
Stanton Lanier says
Dear Heidi, thank you so much for sharing this story about drawing near to God. This is wonderful to hear and I am so glad you enjoyed this post. Wishing you James 4:8 blessings this week! Stanton