Let us draw near with a true heart in full assurance of faith, with our hearts sprinkled clean from an evil conscience and our bodies washed with pure water. Let us hold fast the confession of our hope without wavering, for he who promised is faithful. And let us consider how to stir up one another to love and good works, not neglecting to meet together, as is the habit of some, but encouraging one another, and all the more as you see the Day drawing near.
Hebrews 10: 22-25
This weekend we celebrated the life of Patrina’s mother, Ruth Hardt. Over the last few days, we heard story after story of her faithful life and how she invested in the lives of others. She was a psychiatric nurse, so we had plenty to talk about regarding my job in the pharmaceutical world, but most of our conversations involved our shared Faith. She shared a few books with me over the years and we would often discuss those topics. I’ll miss that Ruth, but we followers of Christ have a hope for something much more.
Memorial services provide an opportunity to think and to evaluate the meaning of life. Think of your closest relationships. Are you growing closer to your spouse or your friends and family? Do you enjoy spending time with them or does it feel more like an obligation?
Before Christ gave Himself for us, the Jewish priests did what they could to approach the Holy God Almighty, but there were obvious barriers that were removed completely by Jesus.
Now we are invited to “draw near with a true heart in full assurance of faith…”
James also tells us to “draw near to God, and he will draw near to you.”
How do you respond to the following quote?
“Drawing near is more about the direction of life than a (single) life event.” – Woodrow Krull
I have a confession to make on this one. When I’ve read these verses over the years, I have tended to think more in terms of events in time of drawing close to God. Maybe it was a time of intense worship or prayer or just an overwhelming realization of God as one time, I walked back in from carrying out the trash on a Monday night.
But Krull’s quote parallels another verse I refer to often –
“…but one thing I do: forgetting what lies behind and straining forward to what lies ahead. I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus.” (Philippians 3: 13-14)
I think drawing closer and closer is a little of both. We have times when God’s presence seems very close and we should make our aim a closer relationship day by day.
When was the last time you experienced that closeness? Are you growing closer and closer or does your relationship with God feel more like an obligation?