“God Calling” today tells us that we must draw near to Him to become conscious of His presence. I’ve found that to be always conscious of His presence is to live always in the Spirit. Someday are better than others for me-I’m a work in progress. Jesus said that true worshipers will worship in spirit and in truth. In that spirit, we are able to see Him sympathizing with us via a little hobbling pigeon. In that spirit, we can hear His “Good morning” in a beautiful sunrise, or experience His loving and tender caress through a gentle breeze. Drawing near or turning to God is to turn our thoughts toward Him; to give thought to Him. That causes His Word to rise up within us and brings His presence to our attention.
Today’s message reminds us that only His presence can truly change things. His presence brings peace out of discord and clamor, beauty out of chaos, and love out of anger, bitterness, and pain and hatred. These things are all changed from within. As we become aware of God’s presence, we become aware of His great love for us. As we realize this, we begin to love ourselves. When we love ourselves, we are able to reach out in that love. That love manifests outwardly into our surroundings and toward the people we come in contact with. The Bible tells us to love our neighbors as ourselves-we can’t love our neighbors if we don’t love ourselves, because you can’t give something you don’t have. God is an awesome God. When He causes you to see your worth, you value, you begin to value yourself. You begin to desire worthy things for yourself; things like order, peace, beauty, simplicity, harmony, and love-real love. They became staples to me once I got that love on the inside of me; once God showed me who and what I am in His eyes. That’s why the best place for someone who is hurting, made a mess of his or her life, can’t see straight for drugs or alcohol or whatever you might be buried under, to be is in God’s presence.
There’s another thought on drawing near to God. Jesus said that when He is lifted up, He will draw all men unto Himself. But, how is someone to want to turn to Him when we misrepresent Him so. We don’t have to drag people to Heaven or scare them to the cross. All we have to do is show them Jesus; show them God’s great love for us. Jesus is God’s manifest love for us. The Bible says that love never fails. If that’s true, why isn’t everyone saved yet? Hmm, God doesn’t lie, so it must be us. I have to wonder where we’re missing it. I am, in myself, and all too often, one of the worst examples-usually because I turn my thoughts to Him too late. The Bible does tell me to “seek Him early.” I lose it, I stumble, and I fall. But, in Him, I can get right back up and keep going. Because of Him, His mercy, grace and unfailing love for me, I don’t have to hide my imperfection. I know that my God is faithful and just to forgive me when I confess my sin. He said if I seek Him, I will find Him, and He will give me the desires of my heart if my way is committed to Him. That means I don’t have to try to overcome my weaknesses and shortcomings by myself. I can say to someone who doesn’t know the Lord, “See, this is me here and now, and if He loves me just like this, I know He will love you!” He’s never failed me yet. All I ever have to do is to turn to Him.