Friday, October 4, 2013
“Let us draw near to God with a sincere heart and with the full assurance that faith brings, having our hearts sprinkled to cleanse us from a guilty conscience and having our bodies washed with pure water.” Hebrews 10:22
What does it mean to draw near to God? Followers of Christ are repeatedly exhorted throughout Hebrews to do so. Hebrews 4:16 says to, “draw near with confidence to the throne of grace…to find grace to help in time of need.” Again in Hebrews 7:25 we are reminded that, “He is able to save forever those who draw near to God through Him.” In Hebrews 11:6 we are warned that it is impossible to please God without faith because, “he who draws near to God must believe that He is, and that He is a rewarder of those who seek Him.” Hebrews seems to center on this key theme – come close in to God.
How important is fellowship with God to you? Is He a distant idea, a fleeting thought, a nagging voice in your mind; or is He entwined in the reality of your days? Does He permeate your life? Do you speak with Him as a friend, run to Him as a refuge, and walk with Him as a companion?
Drawing near to God is not a physical act. It is an unseen movement of faith that takes place in the heart of a person. We can draw near to God while sitting in traffic or sitting in the doctor’s office. We can lean in closer while sitting in class, exercising, flying in an airplane or while on a conference call. Communion with God does not require a church building or a priest or pastor. If Christ lives in you through faith, you are free to draw near with confidence.
It’s an amazing truth to wrap your mind around, isn’t it? Even as Christians, we are aware of our shortcomings, our failures and our unworthiness. How can He know the hidden parts of us and still welcome us to come? This is, in reality, the heart of the Gospel: Christ died in order to make a way for us to draw near to His Father without fear. Because of Jesus, we are not destroyed by our own sin, nor consumed by His holiness. God has sacrificed so much to make a way for us to come. He does not need us...but He does want us.
And yet, even amidst all of this grace, we still try to create our own paths to God. Good works, religious rules and rituals, willpower, knowledge, kindness, church membership and service – none of these can bring us near to God. There is only one way and His name is Jesus Christ.
Dear Father, I humbly draw near to You in faith, understanding that it is only by Your grace through Jesus that I am able to do so. Today, I choose to dwell in Your presence, accepting this gift through faith. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.