Today's Christmas blog post is about drawing near to God. When you think of drawing near to God what emotions does that invoke in you? Does that give you a warm and fuzzy feeling or does that give you a feeling of being 10 years old in the principles office? I think for most people they get more of the principle feeling than anything else. Don't feel bad about that, I think most of the people in bible had a strong fear of being near God too. In most all bible passages when God revealed himself to someone the first thing that is said to the person is 'fear not.' I think that emotion is natural. But I would challenge each of us to fight that instinct and instead overcome our fear and look at drawing near to God as a positive.
So often God's blessings came when people slowed down their day to day and listened to the 'still small voice of God.' So what would it mean to draw near to God and how would it benefit us? Well for me I think the way I best draw near to God is to slow down, get outside, listen to uplifting music (Mandisa!) and read my bible. For many of you the thought of reading a bible is akin to having nails on a chalk board, but you should try it. The stories are so interesting (well don't start in Numbers) and you'll be surprised at how the insights and messages are totally applicable to your life! Start with the book of John or Proverbs. Start small and see how it goes!
I find it easiest to draw near to God when my life is in balance and I'm not over-committed. I love when the pace of life is such that in the morning I can drink my coffee and read from my devotion book 'Jesus Calling.' These are one page inspirational messages that I can read and ponder in 10 minutes. It's a great way to slowly start my day.
It's also good for me to every few months set aside a few hours to get away - to a quiet place and ponder some scripture passages and thought provoking questions. The last time I did that was at least a year ago, and it's high time I put that on the calendar to do. Even though I have time off from work at Christmas, the schedule is already filling up so if I want to make that happen before the New Year really kicks into gear in a just a few short weeks I'm going to have to put it on the calendar and plan for it.
How about you? What would make you desire to draw near to God? How would you do it? Will you plan for it?