James 4:8 Draw close to God, and God will draw close to you. Wash your hands, you sinners; purify your hearts, you hypocrites.
When was the last time you can honestly say that you were close to God? I suspect that most of us would have to admit that we aren’t as close to Him as we should be or want to be. There are many reasons why we struggle with this. Some of us struggle with letting go of those things that keep us from being close to the Lord. There may be certain sins that we enjoy and do not want to let go of. There may be earthly goals that we value more than we do our relationship with Christ. There may be people in our lives that take greater priority to us than the Lord. There may be a lack of concern about the deeper things of life in Christ that causes us to not pursue them like we need to. There may be a distorted sense of our security in Christ that keeps us from sensing the need to grow in our walk with Him. There may be little or no concern about hell that lulls our souls to sleep. Whatever the cause, many of us struggle with getting close to God.
There is always the problem of staying close to God once we get there. Our sinful nature wars against us and often draws us away from God. Many of us are not strong enough in faith to not be lured away. We are not grounded in the Word and disciplined in prayer.
How do we get close to God? We repent of our sins and get serious about our salvation. We resist Satan whenever he rears his ugly head. We take action against him. We become students of the Word and participants in prayer. We put into practice the things we learn from God. We value the things of God more than we do the things of the earth. We purposely keep our eyes focused on Jesus and evaluate everything in light of His righteousness. Holiness becomes our life goal.
Getting close to God and staying there is possible for every believer. In fact, it should be the number one goal in every believer’s life. It takes real determination on our part and much effort. There is no real joy and peace in salvation anywhere except to be near to the heart of God.