“Come close to God and He will come close to you...” — James 4:8 (AMP)
Distance matters – especially during these days of the Coronavirus pandemic. We are told that we should keep our distance to avoid spreading the virus.
But everything is so topsy-turvy. I fell one day in the supermarket, as I was rushing in to buy a newspaper. I slipped as I entered, and fell heavily and noisily onto the tiled floor. I was shaken, but not badly hurt, and I slowly got up to my feet. I didn’t think about it at the time, but there were a few people around, and they just stood there as I fell. They couldn’t have stopped me falling, but they could have helped me up to my feet. But they just stood there, watching, and didn’t come anywhere near. Distance matters.
Another day, I was in a queue in a different supermarket, keeping my distance from the person in front of me in the queue, when an elderly couple joined the queue between us. They looked around, and asked if I was in the queue. I confirmed that I was, and they apologised and then went to join the queue behind me – right behind me. As I was putting my groceries on the belt for the till, they were still right behind me and literally bumped into me several times. Distance matters.
And everything is topsy-turvy when it comes to our heavenly Father, God. As a society and a community and a country, we are so far from God. We put our faith solely in our scientists and our politicians; we have distanced ourselves from God. Even as Christians, we can feel distant from God. Yet, through these trying times, we find ourselves thinking more and more about our faith, or about whether there is a God or not if we are not believers.
Distance matters, and we crave closeness. We crave a hug from our loved ones, a kiss on the cheek, an arm around the shoulder, the reassuring touch of the hand of a close friend, or even a handshake of a stranger. We are physical beings, we crave physical contact. But we are also spiritual beings, and we crave spiritual contact with our heavenly Father.
Come close to God and He will come close to you. [Recognise that you are] sinners, get your soiled hands clean; [realise that you have been disloyal] wavering individuals with divided interests, and purify your hearts [of your spiritual adultery].
James 4:8 (Amplified Bible, Classic Edition)
Distance matters. “Come close to God and He will come close to you.” You must make the first move. We have free will, we have choice, and your heavenly Father, God, will not force Himself upon you. But move close to God and He will move close to you. He will make His presence felt, and He will comfort you, He will strengthen you, and He will protect you through these difficult times.
May we pray: Thank You, Lord, that you promise to come close to us when we come close to you. We ask that You make your presence known and that you give us comfort and strength, and protect us through these difficult times. We ask this in the precious name of our Saviour, Christ Jesus; Amen.
If you’re struggling to get close to God right now, we would like to pray for you – please get in touch. May God Bless You.
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