“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
I think of a story I was told long ago to describe our relationship with God at times. There was a man and a woman who had been married for quite a long time and they loved taking long car rides together. In the midst of one of these car rides, the wife complained to the husband about their seating arrangement. She said, “when we first married you sat close to me and wrapped your arm around me. Now, I can barely reach you and you sit so far away." He gently smiled at her from the driver's seat and said, “I never moved.”
I remember when Rebekah and I were first dating as adults, and we could not see enough of each other. There was not a day that went by when we did not spend time together. I was going to school full time and Rebekah would make special trips to have dinner with me, and we would speak on the phone quite often. If I was not physically seeing her, I was thinking about the next time we would be together.
Over the next several months, we grew closer and closer until I finally asked her to marry me. It seemed the more I drew towards her, the more she drew towards me. Our love grew over those next few months, and we made a commitment to spend our lives together. I speak for myself in saying, I have not always wanted to draw close to her due to my pride and anger, but it didn’t alter my commitment. No matter what I felt, it did not change the covenant I made. I have come to know that when I desire a close relationship with her, she more than reciprocates that closeness.
I think back to times in my life when I have felt God has forgotten about me. I recall periods of time when rebellion crept in, and I felt as if God was moving away from me. I failed to realize that I was the one moving as He is unchanging and desires a perfect relationship with me. I also remember making decisions for God and feeling as if He was going to rapture me up. I have felt the closeness of walking with Him, and I know that if I draw close to Him, He will draw close to me.
God has always been the One in the driver’s seat and we are the ones who have chosen to move away. Are you drawing close to God? Do you feel like He has moved away from you? Will you be honest with yourself and realize that you are the one who has moved away? Are you willing to purify your heart, so that you are able to draw nigh to Him? May we come to know the joy of being in His presence, and may we draw so close to Him that we never lose sight of who He is.
Stay in the fight!