Draw near to God and He will draw near to you. James 4:8
I pray you all are doing well. As I write this, the state of our nation is in a place that I’m sure none of us saw coming when 2020 rolled around.
Times like these can bring a lot of anxiety, uncertainty and confusion. But times like these can also remind us of our need to draw even closer to our Father. Below are a few things that have been on my heart that I pray encourage you as we navigate through this current season.
1. Remind yourself of God’s sovereignty. We don’t know how or why certain things happen in life. But we do know Who sits on the throne. God is sovereign. And His sovereignty means that He has supreme power and authority over all things. Scripture declares, “Who can command things to happen without the Lord’s permission? Does not the Most High send both calamity and good” Lamentations 3:27. For me this a hard truth, but it also brings some solace in knowing that God is not scrambling trying to figure out what is going on. Additionally, as we understand that nothing happens without the Lord’s permission, we can also remind our hearts that “All things work together for the good of those who love God and are called according to His purpose” Romans 8:28. I don’t know how and I don’t know when- but we know that His word His true.
2. Reevaluate and repent. Now that I’ve been forced to slow down I realize how much I’ve been moving. Now that my plans are not going quite the way I expected, I realize how much I need to release control. And now that I realize how much I need to draw closer to God, I see how far I strayed. The words of James in chapter 4 verse 8 are a mirror to our hearts, which force us to really see what has taken priority in our lives. Come close to God and He will come close to you. [Recognize that you are] sinners, get your soiled hands clean; [realize that you have been disloyal] wavering individuals with divided interests, and purify your hearts [of your spiritual adultery]. As am washing my hands, I’m also washing my heart. Revaluating areas of my life that may not line up with what God wants for my future.
3. Meditate on scripture. While we’re “social distancing” it’s tempting to consume our time with the latest news updates, binge watch our favorite shows and scroll through our social feeds. I know because ‘tis me. Lol! But this is also the perfect time to feast on God’s word. If we are full from digesting what everyone else has to say, how much room will we have left when God wants to speak to our hearts? The appetizers might taste nice, but the main course is what we want. Taste and see that the Lord is good! Psalm 34:8
4. Grieve your disappointments. The impact of this pandemic goes way beyond what we see. Beside the health crisis, people’s jobs are on the line, weddings have been cancelled and families have had to alter funerals plan. Even if only temporary, life as we know it has changed. And for some it’s a lot. It’s heart wrenching. But I will echo my theme: draw near to God. Take time to pour out your heart to God about the things that hurt you, the disappointments you have and intercede for others-knowing that our Father is big enough to handle it all. O my people, trust in him at all times. Pour out your heart to him, for God is our refuge. Selah Psalm 62:8
5. Stay hopeful. Through it all we must maintain and give the message of hope. Hope is the anchor for our souls (Hebrews 6:19). The beauty of an anchor’s true purpose if often displayed in some of life’s most difficult storms. As children of God we carry the message of hope not only for ourselves but for the world around us.
Be safe. Check in on your neighbors and loved ones. Get some rest. But most importantly…
Draw Near To God.
Until Next Time,