When the righteous cry for help, the Lord hears
and delivers them out of all their troubles.
The Lord is near to the brokenhearted
and saves the crushed in spirit.
What must you do to draw near to God?
I think for many they treat the presence of God like having an important guest come to the house. They spend the day frantically cleaning, making everything presentable. You might put out the best china, arrange the impressive books you’ve been reading in a conspicuous place, shove other more undesirable things out of sight.
I know that when my grandma used to come to visit, she expected to find a clean room, so my brother and I would shove everything under our beds, thinking she’d never look there. Of course that was the first place she looked, and then we had to clean in earnest under her watchful eye.
The problem with this approach to God is it is a lie. To think that we have to get ourselves right before can draw near to God forgets the very reason Christ came to us. He came to heal the sick, the rescue the perishing, to save the lost. He came to save those who could not save themselves. He came to the lame, the blind, the broken, because they knew that His coming was their only hope. To think that we have to shape up before we can come to him only encourages us to boast more in ourselves, our own ability to put everything back together, that that is an illusion.
To know the nearness of God you must simply acknowledge your need for help and cry out to him. This is what the Psalmist teaches – when you see the depth of your need and cry out to Him, the Lord hears! “The Lord is near to the brokenhearted and saves the crushed in spirit.”
C.S. Lewis echoes this in his book, The Four Loves, “Man approaches God most nearly when he is in one sense least like God. For what can be more unlike than fullness and need, sovereignty and humility, righteousness and penitence, limitless power and a cry for help?”
If you want to know God’s fullness, admit your need.
If you want to rest in God sovereignty, humble yourself before Him.
If you want to know God’s righteousness, repent and believe in Jesus Christ for your salvation.
If you want to be strengthened by God’s almighty power, cry out to Him for help!