I love this promise. I love how it communicates that God will always respond to us.
The entire scripture says “Come near to God and He will come near to you. Wash your hands, you sinners, and purify your hearts you double minded.”
At first read, that sounds so harsh! But, then, I hear the grace and forgiveness in it.
I hear God telling me that I don’t have to clean myself up before coming to Him. His grace allows me to do step away from the world and focus on Him.
The entire chapter this verse is pulled from is setting us Christians straight. And, I love it.
James, the author of this book, shows us who we truly are but doesn’t leave us feeling beaten up about our sinful nature but offers us hope in the goodness, grace, & security of God.
Verse 7 tells us to step away from wickedness then verse eight tells us to draw close to God THEN clean ourselves up. Why?
Because he knows how far sin can pull us away from our Father. He knows how vulnerable we are when we are separated and he knows that we can’t clean ourselves up a part from the grace God offers us in His presence.
This promise, this verse should give our spirits rest. It should urge us to go back humbly before The Lord knowing that our sins will be tossed as far as the east is from the west. That our God will always welcome us back and lift us back up.
He will comfort us, and quiet us with His love. He will take us back and lift up our heads never allowing our sins to define us or shame us- for there is no condemnation in Him.
Even if our distance isn’t caused by immobilizing sin but a busy schedule where we haven’t carved out precious moments to be spent with our Savior, illness, or exhaustion – He is still always there. Waiting to restore, heal, and revitalize us.
God is good to us.
Even when we aren’t so good to Him.
And, isn’t it amazing and reassuring to know that no matter what the cause or circumstances of our distance, He is always there. He never turns His back on us. He never leaves us or forsakes us. His grace only abounds that much more.
Could we love like He does? He shows us what true forgiveness and love looks like and expects us to treat others in the same manner.
But, are we willing to?
Would it be easier to forgive and embrace another when you realize how much you (a sinful being) have been forgiven for and recognize HOW you were embraced by your (perfect creator &) Father upon your request for forgiveness & reconciliation? A request you desire to be answered in the affirmative no matter how often you ask?
That perspective will remind you of who you are and what you deserve. This scripture will remind you of who God is and what He deserves.
He is good.
… here’s to a God who shows us how to love and forgive unconditionally with great grace.