Humility before God
So humble yourselves before God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you. Come close to God, and God will come close to you. Wash your hands, you sinners; purify your hearts, for your loyalty is divided between God and the world. Let there be tears for what you have done. Let there be sorrow and deep grief. Let there be sadness instead of laughter, and gloom instead of joy. Humble yourselves before the Lord, and he will lift you up in honor. James 4:7-10 NLT
Is there anything more frustrating than a child who refuses to humble to his or her parents? The child that stubbornly refuses when told to do something. And then, when told not to do something, he or she immediately does it! We do not want to see a child rebelling to his or her parents, especially when we see it coming from a child who has exceptionally good parents. How about when we see it happening within ourselves, do we detest that same rebellion? Even the best parents are faulty in many ways, but our Lord and Savior is perfect in every way. And from the goodness of His heart and the greatness of His grace, He has poured out upon us blessing after blessing. How do we respond to all the things that God does? Do we listen to Him and do what He tells us to do? In the same way, are we refraining from those things He tells us to avoid and not to do? Do we humble ourselves before Him and that no matter what comes our way, we continue to respond to Him with gratefulness? The only way we can resist rebelling to God is by not giving in to the devil and by humbling ourselves to God. We need to constantly draw ourselves to Him through His Word. Rebellion against God is a serious matter. If we draw near to God, He will draw near to us! God promises from His Word that when you draw near to Him, the devil “will flee from you.” This is the call of the hour! There is no more urgent and important matter for each of us than to draw near to God. It is time to turn our faces towards God and our backs towards the devil. May this New Year be the year where we take actions on things we know God is calling us to do. It is not just agreeing with God and has no determination to act. We cannot just draw near with our lips, but not with our hearts. The Lord Jesus Christ confronted the religious leaders because they are just interested in the outward expressions of their religion. “These people honor me with their lips, but their hearts are far from me” (Matthew 15:8)! Drawing near to God is far more than merely mouthing a few words. It is by establishing ourselves in expressing our allegiance alone to our Lord and Savior and not having a divided loyalty. “No one can serve two masters. For you will hate one and love the other; you will be devoted to one and despise the other. You cannot serve God and be enslaved to money… Seek the Kingdom of God above all else, and live righteously” (Matthew 6:24, 33).