“Therefore submit to God. Resist the devil and he will flee from you. Draw near to God and He will draw near to you…” James 4:7-8
“casting all your care upon Him, for He cares for you.” 1 Peter 5:7
“And we have known and believed the love that God has for us. God is love, and he who abides in love abides in God, and God in him.” 1 John 4:16
“Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies and God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our tribulation, that we may be able to comfort those who are in any trouble, with the comfort with which we ourselves are comforted by God. For as the sufferings of Christ abound in us, so our consolation also abounds through Christ.” 2 Cor. 1:3-5
One of the most beautiful blessings I have ever received is not something I can hold in my hands, nor something I can take a photograph of, nor something I can show anybody else, nor something I can place on a table to look at every time I come indoors, nor something I can cuddle up with at night and fall asleep beside, nor something I can wrap up in a box and put a bow on and give to someone else as a beautiful blessing for that person to hold in his or her hands. But there are few things I have received in my life more precious than this that I share with you now.
I have had countless challenges in my life, and continue to struggle to this very day on a just about daily basis, but even as a long-time Christ follower I confess I knew and had come to believe God cared for me – but I had never truly FELT His care. I had seen it in countless ways in terms of physical provision, loved ones praying for me, answers to some prayers, etc. But in the very depths of my soul, in the deep of my heart, I had difficulty FEELING His care in any kind of tangible way. Until the day everything changed.
I don’t believe it was any coincidence I was on a little fast (fasting one particular food I LOVE LOVE LOVE) with the words “draw near” as the theme for my fast. I had been focused on drawing near to the Lord with the expectation He would fulfill His promise to draw near to me. Little did I know for the first time ever I would truly FEEL and EXPERIENCE His amazing, awesome, beautiful, wonderful care for me.
I no longer felt like God was a long distance away watching me suffer and simply allowing me to go through my struggle with His desire to refine and grow me in the midst of it. I literally felt the unfathomable care of God. Like I mattered to God beyond measure, and like He cared beyond description about how much I was hurting. And like He was right there with me. His love, kindness, mercy, tenderness, compassion, sensitivity, sweetness, gentleness, healing balm, His all sufficient arms and grace, His everlasting invitation to be in His holy presence. Yes, I felt God near. With me. In me. For me.
This isn’t about me, however. It’s about you, friend. About my being compelled to encourage you that God REALLY cares. He REALLY loves you. He REALLY cares about you. He REALLY wants you to DRAW NEAR to Him through Jesus.
To repent of your sins, to turn to Christ as Lord, believing He died for you and was raised from the dead, genuinely devoting yourself to Christ forevermore. Turning to Him, pouring out your heart to Him, crying in His loving arms, releasing your hurts to Him, crying out to Him for wisdom and believing He will give it to you, resting in His love, basking in the Truth of His Word and the promises within it, hearing the call of His Spirit beckoning you to come to Him, to come to Him, to come to Him, to sit at His feet and rest awhile.
To know God like you have never known Him before, to know and experience His love, and His countless spiritual blessings, and to lean back on Him, to fall apart before Him, to put on no appearances, but to be yourself however you are right now, even if you’re hurting, even if you’re struggling, to surrender yourself utterly to God – and to His amazing care.
He REALLY cares for you. Believe it. Feel it. Experience it. His care. And be healed and refreshed in His indescribably wonderful forever embrace. AMEN!