Mar 22, 2020
216 Draw Near Unto God and He Will Draw Near Unto You A Guided Christian Meditation on James 4:7-10
I'm Chaplain Jared and I work as a hospice chaplain and an ICU chaplain, my purpose in making this podcast is to help you find more peace in your life and to be more open for your heart to be changed by the Spirit of God. By using centuries old form of Christian Meditation named Lectio Divina:
Outline: Relaxation, Reading, Meditation, Prayer, Contemplation and Visualization.
Get into a place where you can sit comfortably and uninterrupted for about 20 minutes.You should hopefully not be driving or anything tensing or unrelaxing. If you feel comfortable to do so, I invite you to close your eyes.
Guided Relaxation / Guided Meditation:
Breathe and direct your thoughts to contacting God. Let your stomach be a balloon inflate, deflate.
Bible verses for Meditation:
7 Submit yourselves, then, to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you.
8 Come near to God and he will come near to you. Wash your hands, you sinners, and purify your hearts, you double-minded.
9 Grieve, mourn and wail. Change your laughter to mourning and your joy to gloom.
10 Humble yourselves before the Lord, and he will lift you up.
7 Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you.
8 Draw nigh to God, and he will draw nigh to you. Cleanse your hands, ye sinners; and purify your hearts, ye double minded.
9 Be afflicted, and mourn, and weep: let your laughter be turned to mourning, and your joy to heaviness.
10 Humble yourselves in the sight of the Lord, and he shall lift you up.
Meditation on Scripture:
Some of my Chaplain friends have been sharing this scripture almost as a joke but then I realized how profound it is. In some ways I am hesitant to share this message but I feel profoundly that this is what we all need right now. For everyone who has access to my voice right now, also has access to communicate with hundreds of people across the globe on the internet. Despite that, the efforts we make for health reasons may leave people feeling more isolated and lonely. This scripture points to an even greater need. As we are feeling the effects of social separation, we can remember that God invites us to draw as close as we want to him. He sets the conditions for what that will look like. It requires us to humble ourselves much of the time. Even as we believe that we are doing pretty good we can receive even greater love from God by submitting ourselves to Him. Peace comes from humbling ourselves before God.
When we feel out of control. When we feel like there is nothing we can do, we can draw near unto him. When health officials ask us to wash our hands, God asks us to purify our actions and our hearts. What an encouraging thought that God invites us to draw near to him and provides a way to do that. I am not saying that somehow we need to believe that our actions make us pure, God makes us pure. God is teaching us how to draw near to him. We draw near to him as we learn that the things that we think are most important are not. As we are kind to others and speak with genuine hearts and help those that mourn, we take on the heart of God. Earlier in this scripture it basically says God is extremely interested, even jealous, to see the spirit in us that He put there.
Each time we wash our hands may we also remember to wash our hearts. What a symbol of love this is. I fervently hope that this message brings joy to you as you realize the way to be exalted is to submit to God. I believe that this scripture is not meant to depress us but to lift us out of the trap of the carnal mind that each and every one of us are constantly wrestling with. As you reflect on this message I hope above all that this stirs in your heart a glimmer of the immense love that God has for you in wanting to lift us to a higher plane where His love will take us.
Meditation of Prayer:
Pray as directed by the Spirit.
Dedicate these moments to the patient waiting, when you feel ready ask God for understanding you desire from Him.
Meditation of God and His Glory / Hesychasm:
I invite you to sit in silence feeling being patient for your own faults and trials.
Summarize what insights you have gained during this meditation and meditate and visualize positive change in your life:
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Final Question: How can you humble yourself before God, purify your heart today and draw near to God?
Final Thought: God loves you so much. Even in the midst of tough times. I live in California and things are being locked down over here, and yet the heavens remain open. As we find ourselves bored we can find so many positive things to do if we spend the time to look. I have found myself to be more easily frustrated than normal. I have felt a need to course correct. A lot of people I have been talking to have been feeling this same mix of calm and chaos. This is a perfect environment for us to draw near to God. The way he recommends doing that is by humbling ourselves before him. He loves us so much even when we struggle, and wants the best for us. Unfortunately, many times the things we most need come at the other end of extremely hard experiences. May these experiences draw us to see and experience the never ending infinite love of God.
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