It may seem trivial to start here when talking about getting closer to God but oftentimes the greatest hindrance to drawing near to God is the hidden doubt of the heart. The thoughts of “Is this really working?” or “Does God even hear me?” While these questions are common, they pose a great threat to drawing near to God. Why? Well, because if you don’t believe that God wants you near to Him then your efforts to come closer are futile. So my question for you is: Do you believe that God wants you to be closer to Him? Let’s go to the book of beginnings to see how God feels about being near to us.
“Enoch walked faithfully with God; then he was no more, because God took him away.”
Here we see a man by the name of Enoch that walked with God. And if Enoch could be close enough with God to walk with Him, then so can you! Get that reality established in your heart. God wants you to be close to Him. So what are you waiting for?
As you see the title, your first inclination might be to respond by saying “Here we go. You’re just going to tell me to read the Bible again. I’ve been reading the Bible for a long time and I still don’t feel that much closer to God.” And while I pray that isn’t the truth, maybe if you’re honest, you do in fact feel this way. Maybe you’ve started to give up reading the Bible because you’ve heard other people say how God spoke to them through the Bible, but you’ve never experienced that. May I submit to you, that maybe a change in perspective is the solution. See in Proverbs 3, the writer is writing to his son and says something very profound.
“My son, do not forget my teaching, but keep my commands in your heart for they will prolong your life many years and bring you peace and prosperity.”
The writer understands that the most important thing for his son isn’t wealth, prosperity, health, even success. The writer, speaking from personal experience, instructs his son to keep the teachings that God taught him. When you read the Bible are you looking for information or transformation? If you’re just looking for information the Bible has plenty of it, but information does not mean transformation. If you’re truly looking to be transformed then you will approach the Bible as the key to teaching you how to become the person that God has called you to be. So dig into the word, and be transformed.
Do. Do what? Do whatever the word says. Getting closer to God means you are in an active pursuit. Can I ask you a question? How actively have you been pursuing God? Or maybe I could phrase it better this way: What other things in life are you actively pursuing? Maybe a relationship, a career, a good grade on a test, a raise at your job, a family. Now, if you were to compare the intensity you pursue those other things and measure it to the intensity you are pursuing a deeper relationship with God, which one is more active? Getting closer to God requires you to do something! And not just do anything, but more specifically let’s see how James puts it in his letter.
“Do not merely listen to the word, and so deceive yourselves. Do what it says.”
Do what? Do what the word says. Growing closer to God is as easy as believing God wants you close, reading the Bible to see what God says, and finally taking what He says and simply Doing It. You can get as close to God as you want, but it will always require you to do something. So what are you doing?
How to get close to God? Believe, Read, Do.