Over the years, I’ve talked to many people who, at some time in their lives, have accepted Jesus as their savior. Many of them struggle every day to be good people. Many have given up, because they have lost that battle. They tell me they want to be close to God, but they just don’t seem to be able to reach that goal. I know what they’re going through, because I’ve been there myself.
Living a Christian life in this day and age can be challenging. Many times we lose track of what’s important before we realize it. It’s so easy to wake up one morning, and realize you’re a million miles away from God. Well, there’s a reason for that. “If You’re No Longer Close To God, Guess Who Moved.” I’m sure you’ve heard that one. It’s true. If we’re not close to God, it’s our fault. There are many things to distract us, and too often, we allow other things to take priority over God. We don’t mean to, but it happens.
When we come to Jesus we’re so excited to know we’re saved. It’s so good to be free from the guilt and shame that our past life of sin put on us. Then the newness wears off and the excitement level drops, and many times we forget that we have been made into a new creature. Satan reminds us of our past, and we begin to wonder if it was real. Many ask themselves, “Did God really save me?” If one reaches this point, it’s a sure bet that they haven’t been spending enough time with Jesus, in prayer and in Bible study. Believe it or not, this makes a big difference in a person, and others around you can see the difference in us when we spend time with Jesus. (Acts 4:13)
We have to be intentional about our relationship with Jesus, just like any other relationship. If you aren’t close enough to God that you can hear and know his voice when he speaks, then try these few steps; Pray, Read and Study the Bible, and Avoid Evil things that will lead you away from God.
PRAY – Talk to Jesus and listen for him to talk to you. It may not be audible every time, but sometimes it will. Talk with him all the time, no matter where you are or what time it is. Stay in constant communication with him. Talking to Jesus is the first and most important step to get back on the right track. Return to your first love (Revelation 2:4-5). Pray without ceasing (1 Thessalonians 5:17). Pray more for others than for yourself, but remember, prayer is the first step to getting closer to God.
BIBLE READING – Get out your Bible and read it. Read it every day. Job said, “I have treasured the words of his mouth more than my necessary food” (Job 23:12). Reading the bible helps us to get to know Jesus better. The better we know him the easier it is to trust him, and that draws us closer to him. The more time we spend with Jesus, the more like him we become. We actually become less sinful. We see more clearly. Many of the things that was once acceptable to us, we now see their true nature and reject them. The opposite is also true. The less time we spend with Jesus, the more sinful we become and evil is easier for us to accept. So, fill your mind with God’s word.
BIBLE STUDY – Studying the Bible is comparing scripture with scripture. We take everything the whole Bible says about a certain subject, and put them all together to get the full picture. Then we know everything that God has said on that subject. We are commanded to study for God’s approval (2 Timothy 2:15) and to be able to tell others about the hope he gives us, whenever someone asks us (1 Peter 3:15). Studying the Bible also helps us to better understand what he expects from us, and we find proof that it is, in deed, the Word of God.
AVOID EVIL – The Bible tells us that Job was a righteous man who loved God and avoided evil (Job 1:1). 1 Thessalonians 5:22, tells us to, “Avoid all forms of evil.” In Psalm 101:3, David said, “I will set no wicked thing before my eyes:” We have to protect ourselves from evil things coming into our minds. Whether through the eyes or the ears. What many people don’t understand is, you can’t live like everybody else, and participate in all the things that the world offers, and still stay close to God. People disagree strongly when you tell them that their entertainment is preventing them from being as close to God as they need to be, but today, the majority of movies, TV shows, games, and music is controlled by people with no morals, no family values, and no desire to please God. In fact, many of them don’t even believe in God. At least, that’s what they say.
A person who has been born again, and wants to stay close to God, should not watch any presentation that shows anything the bible says we shouldn’t participate in. If the Bible says don’t do it, then it’s a sin. If a movie, or TV, or a play, or real life presents such things, we should avoid those presentations. Sin is often glorified by movies and TV, and by watching it over and over, we become desensitized. Common sense should tell us this is true, but I know this from experience.
It’s not just the things you see, but also the filthy language, with the sexual references and the innuendos. Even the commercials and advertisements are going too far lately. If God’s followers watch movies and television at all, we should only watch programs that are Godly, or at least family orientated. I’ve even seen several “Christian” films that have cursing in them, which makes no sense at all, because the Bible says we shouldn’t use foul language. Many people try to rationalize that fact away, and say the only bad words are using God’s name in a derogatory manner. Sad to say, I used to be one of them, until God showed me the truth in his word. Look at what God says about it at this link. What’s Wrong With Using Profanity?
Video games are the same way. Not all are bad, but many are. Not just video games, but board games, and card games as well. We need to be wise in choosing our entertainment. Everything that we see and hear is teaching us, and we need to be careful what we allow ourselves to learn.
The music we choose to listen to is also a factor in our drawing closer to God. Many people don’t like it when you tell them they’re listening to the wrong music. Not all secular music is bad, but much of it is. Apart from the fact that most music today is engineered to alter people’s minds as well as bodies, the songs are filled with filthy words, and immoral messages. They glorify sin and demean those who don’t participate in those sinful acts. Look what Colossians 3:16 says about music.
Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly in all wisdom; teaching and admonishing one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with grace in your hearts to the Lord.
We should fill ourselves the word of God in all wisdom, and teach others with songs. Whatever the message in a song may be, we learn from it, whether it’s good or bad. Even though Contemporary Christian music is supposed to be Godly, many songs don’t even mention God, and some have no destination from the music of the world. If we want to draw closer to God, we should listen to music that makes us think about him. Songs that uplift God as creator. Songs that talk about our duties and responsibilities toward him. Proverbs 4:23 says, “Above all guard your heart; for out of it are the issues of life.
In Philippines 4:8, Paul says, “Whatever things are True, whatever things are Honorable, whatever things are Just, whatever things are Pure, whatever things are Lovely, whatever things are Of Good Report; Whatever has Virtue, and Praise, meditate on these things.” In verse 9 he said, “The things which you learned and received and heard and saw in me, do these things: and the God of peace will be with you.”
That’s what I want. That’s what all those people I’ve talked to over the years wanted, but just don’t know how to get there. If that’s what you want, remember that it takes a little work on our part, as with any relationship. There are many who worship and serve God with all their hearts. They have dedicated their lives to his service, and are very close to him, but there are many who are still struggling with their relationship with God. Try these few things for yourself, and you will see that they work. Then, share them with others and watch God transform their lives as well.
More Bible Truth For The End Time
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