Psalm 16:11 “Thou wilt shew me the path of life: in thy presence is fulness of joy; at thy right hand there are pleasures for evermore.”
John 21:20 “Then Peter, turning about, seeth the disciple whom Jesus loved following; which also leaned on his breast at supper, and said, Lord, which is he that betrayeth thee?”
Winters in Wisconsin can be quite brutal. Cold. Snow. Wind. Combine them and it can take your breath away. Unless you prepare properly when outdoors, it can be quite damaging. But when you dress properly, you can enjoy the beauty of newfallen snow and the bite of cold on your cheek.
The same occurs in our relationships with people. You can be so close to someone and feel miles away while others could be miles away and feel as if they are in the same room. The work put into being close or drawing closer to someone takes thought and effort on both parts.
Much is true in our relationship with the Savior. God set forth in His Word, what it takes to be close to Him.
“…in thy presence is fulness of joy;”
Often, we may feel as if Heaven and the presence of God is light years away – that is until we read:
Hebrews 13:5 “...for he hath said, I will never leave thee, nor forsake thee.”
Matthew 28:20 “Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you alway, even unto the end of the world. Amen.”
John, in his gospel, refers to himself as ‘the disciple whom Jesus loved’. John knew that Jesus loved him and rested in that love. So much so, that when he was physically in Jesus’ presence, he got as close to Him as he could. We too, can know what John had today.
If you feel cold and far away, know this – God has not moved nor changed. It becomes our responsibility to draw closer to Him.
James 4:8 “Draw nigh to God, and he will draw nigh to you. Cleanse your hands, ye sinners; and purify your hearts, ye double minded.”
His promise is true each and every time. Our enemy knows where our power lies – but do we? You cannot separate two hearts knit so closely in love. Our love for God and the desire to be close to Him must supercede the desire for those things that distract us; those things that steal our time and those things that challenge our love and devotion to Him.
As many of us attend services, gather with family and spend some much needed time from work, would we ask to have the heart of the disciple John to lay our head on the breast of Jesus? To hear His heart beating? To feel His warmth warm us? All of this and so much more is possible dear, child of God. He is waiting for us to take the first step.
May this Christmas be one of His presence, His comfort, and His love. Let the greatest gift be not just what we receive at salveation, but that which we give to Him – our whole mind, body and soul to be used for His glory!