Close to God (part 1)...

Come close to God, and God will come close to you.
James 4:8

This is one of my favorite pieces of Scripture. It says so much with the least amount of words. It is an incredible insight and promise.

The first time I read it, and it actually meant something to me, a big question quickly followed: What does it mean to "come close to God" when God is clearly not a destination, location, or tangible thing?? I deeply want to come close to God, but how? 

Immediately, an answer came to mind, "It is not a matter of where God is (God is all and is in all). Come closer to who God is."

Come close to what you know about God. Not "facts" about God  or Scripture , but close to what you know about Who God is: namely, Love. This is why 1 John 4:16 says

"God is love. Whoever lives in love lives in God, and God in them."

Knowing that Love is a great deal more than an emotion or idea, but a Way of living, thinking, and responding to life, this is the key to coming close to God. It's no longer "turning the other cheek because the Bible tells me so," but turning the other cheek because I am overwhelmed with Love and the injury of a slapped cheek just isn't that important to me anymore.

And when we move closer in this direction, the promise of James 4:8 stands true! When we come close to God in the way that we live, our eyes open more and more to the closeness of God.

[To be continued with part 2: Silence...]

Josh Pinkston