Meditations

Nearer, Still Nearer– A Lesson for 2015

“But it is good for me to draw near to God: I have put my trust in the Lord GOD, that I may declare all thy works.” -Psalm 73:28

I am a little late, it seems, in getting my New Year’s post up. In all honesty, I wasn’t sure I would write one. But God has put something on my heart, so why not share it?

The Lord seems to teach me things in themes. In the summer/fall of 2013, He taught me about His love– that it is personal, real, and deep. In spring 2014, He taught me that Jesus is all I need– He is the best friend and the sweetest Prince Charming I will ever know. In the summer of 2014, I learned that I can’t do anything by myself– any success has to be by Him and through Him. In the fall of 2014, God taught me about prayer– how powerful it is, how nothing is too small to bring to Him in prayer, and what a real, consistent, intimate prayer-life is like. And now, at the beginning of 2015, I believe God is bringing me a new lesson, a new theme: drawing near to Him. It is a combination of all the lessons I’ve been learning so far, if you think about it.

Drawing near to God involves letting go. It involves separation; it includes purification.

“Draw nigh to God, and he will draw nigh to you. Cleanse your hands, ye sinners; and purify your hearts, ye double minded.” -James 4:8

It means letting go of the world, releasing our favorite sins, so that we can reach for the Father with both hands. You can’t wash your hands if they are clenched in greedy fists.

Drawing near to God involves being crushed. 

“The Lord is nigh unto them that are of a broken heart; and saveth such as be of a contrite spirit.” -Psalm 34:18

The Hebrew word used for “contrite” comes from the Hebrew root word דָּכָא or daka’, which means “To be broken in pieces, to be crushed.”  “It also means “dust.” In other words, God is near those that are humble. We must come to the end of ourselves, and allow ourselves to be broken and crushed. Only then can the Master gently shape us into something useful and beautiful.

Drawing near to God involves seeking out His Word, the Bible. I want to take a moment and say that the Bible is what we need the most– not devotional books and commentaries. Sure, they’re great help and make inspiring reading material, but if we’re spending more time reading what man has to say about God instead of what God has to say about Himself, then we will not come to know God the way He intends to be known. {…End of rant. 🙂 }

“With my whole heart have I sought thee: O let me not wander from thy commandments. Thy word have I hid in mine heart, that I might not sin against thee…. I will meditate in thy precepts, and have respect unto thy ways. I will delight myself in thy statutes: I will not forget thy word.” -Psalm 119:10-11, 15-16

Drawing near to God cannot be done with half-hearted attempts. It is a matter of the whole heart. It is done by passionately pursuing His commandments– His Word. It is done by memorizing the scriptures, hiding it in your heart, and thinking about it later on. It is finding the ultimate joy in hearing the Word’s of our Maker. Think of that “special someone” in your life; is this not the way you treat them? You read and re-read every text message or letter so that you won’t forget a word. When you see his/her name pop up on the lockscreen, your face lights up with a smile of uncontainable delight. You think about the last conversations you had, replaying the words in your mind. This is the relationship God wants with you and me! Spend time in His Word– you will never regret it.

Drawing near to God involves praise and prayer. Who is God? What has He done for you? Think about it! Praise Him for it, in prayer and in song! God loves it when we talk to Him, and He loves it when we sing to Him.

“Make a joyful noise unto God, all ye lands: Sing forth the honour of his name: make his praise glorious…. All the earth shall worship thee, and shall sing unto thee; they shall sing to thy name. Selah.” -Psalm 66:1-2, 4

Talk to Him. Tell Him what is going on in your life; ask for His help, for His strength, for His wisdom. He desires you to talk to Him, to tell Him everything!

“Trust in him at all times; ye people, pour out your heart before him: God is a refuge for us. Selah.” – Psalm 62:8

I am so excited to see the way God will continue to teach me what it means to be near Him. I pray that some of you will also take the time to draw near to Him, and to explore what that really means.

I am including a link to the beautiful hymn “Nearer, Still Nearer.” Click here to listen! It is a beautiful song that has become a prayer of mine.

heart-bible 

5 thoughts on “Nearer, Still Nearer– A Lesson for 2015

  1. Paige,
    Your writing is beautiful, and your heart for God, even more so. I love that God speaks to you in “themes.” And the theme of drawing near is an incredible one. Just reading this post has made we want to draw nearer to God. And has also made me consider..what is the theme He is speaking to me right now? Or during this season of my life? I love how you said that we sometimes tend to read man’s word about God, instead of God’s words about himself. Simple and yet profound! Some mornings when I can’t find the words to pray, I just simply say, “Show me Your thoughts.” And then I open His word. And He really is faithful to show me, if I’m just quiet enough and eager enough to listen. It has been refreshing to hear your words. Keep writing for HIs glory.
    Rebekah:)

    1. Rebekah,
      Thank you so much for your sweet, thoughtful response! I can’t tell you how encouraging it was to read. Yes, I love how God shows me things from His Word and answers prayer, even when I’m not sure what I need. He’s so very good, all the time.
      Have a blessed day, and than you again for reading and commenting!
      Paige

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