Jesus is coming soon
Drawing closer than close – Sermon Repost by Pastor Todd Boxley
Good morning, everyone. Welcome to “Try Jesus!” If this is your first time joining us, it’s great to have you with us. I would like to thank all the new members for joining “Try Jesus.” Also welcome those in Texas, New Jersey, Colorado, Kansas, Maryland, and Arizona.
What a great week everyone. It is really awesome to see God’s people love above and beyond when calamity comes near, and when it is far away. Even though things continue to look bleak, Jesus is still in control.
Let’s pray, “Heavenly Father, thank you for gathering hearts and minds together. Lord, we need your word to awaken our souls today. Lord, sometimes our hearts are like oil that hasn’t been changed after 3,000 miles.
The sludge and heaviness begins to weigh us down. But today Lord, we pray for your fresh anointing to revive, invigorate, inspire, and fill us this morning as the fresh dew that lays on the grass.
Father, because your word says that it’s your desire to send angels to separate the wheat from the tares and to burn off all unrighteousness, we invite you right now into the midst of your people.
Lord, this morning, baptize us again in fire. Let the hearts of your people burn brightly again for you. Purify us, refine us. Bring purity to the lost. Save them, Lord. Let a billion-soul harvest of souls come forth for your Kingdom.
Father, help us with your living message today. Help us to walk in you, the Spirit of God. Grow good fruit in our lives this morning. We cannot live out these things on our own. Bless your word today. In Jesus’ name, amen.”
I pray today’s message would help those that feel stuck in life. There are so many lonely people today that need lifted out of their well of emptiness. I grew up in a family where, at times it was very difficult to find any privacy or time to be alone.
Sometimes when the family would go shopping, I would ask my mom if I could stay home until they got back. It was so peaceful and quiet spending time with my favorite toy, book, or video game.
Some of you value time to get close, or closer to that object or personal touch from something or someone. Today, I’m going to ask you to look back aways to that relationship you wanted so desperately to cultivate, but it never took root.
I myself, can look back and see how much I miss my mom, who passed away in 2017. I guess you could say I grew up a mommas boy. I felt closer to my mom than my dad. Although I loved my dad, there seemed to be an armed length relationship between us.
The way we usually got a little closer, was if it involved talking about sports. I felt there were moments when I cringed instead of embracing the conversations we had. Drawing close to those you live under the same roof with can be tedious at times.
Many experts on the nuclear family (notice the word nuclear), would say it’s perfectly normal to sometimes push away from those you live with. Well, I actually spoken to many people who say they had very divisive relationships with their parents or siblings.
Even some of the older television shows like “The Brady Bunch, Little House on the Prairie, Growing Pains, The Waltons, Facts of Life, Happy Days, Different Strokes, Wonder Years, or Father knows best” seemed to portray families that had bonding close relationships.
But the realism or lack of realism did not resonate with many who tried to copy the shows day to day family experiences. I’m always so excited to hear individuals tell me about who they felt very close too growing up.
Of course some people had more than one person who was instrumental in helping to shape their lives into who they turned out to be. I always love to hear stories of people telling me they were closest to their grandparents.
I’ll never forget the time when me and about ten people stopped at a Chili’s restaurant after church. I’m not crazy about spicy food, but my daughter and her friends from church love it.
As we were seated, I always ask the waitress or waiter if there is anyone they would like for us to pray for after taking our order. I always ask for first name only to help them understand that I care about the whole of the person without knowing their last name.
Anyway, after asking the waitress if I good pray for anyone she loved, she stood there and started to cry. She has just spoken to her grandmother before she came to take our order.
Her grandmother was very ill, and she told us she was closer to her than anyone in her family. After telling her we would pray for her when she went to give our orders to the chefs, instead of leaving she stayed while I prayed for her grandmother.
I was surprised that she took hold of my hand after I finished praying and told me thank you. She felt like a tremendous burden was lifted off her shoulders because she had been depressed and disappointed all day at work.
As our food was being brought out to the ten of us, I noticed the waitress had come back with the manager, the franchise owner, and some the chefs. They began to tell me what kind of employee this waitress was.
She had won many employee of the month awards and the customers loved her. But the manager didn’t stop there. He looked at me and told that everything that was ordered was going to be free of charge.
The manager begin to share with me how much the waitress had been down about her grandmother. The waitress would talk about her grandmother all day long.
I remember telling everyone standing at our table that God has created us for fulfillment of sharing genuine oneness and closeness of love to those in our lives. I told them I would continue to pray for those who cared some much about this young waitress.
Again, I’m sure many of you have that favorite relative or friend that you seem to be inseparable from. You just enjoy being together with them. It seems time stands still when you are with them.
But sadly there are also many today still looking for that satisfying closeness in a relationship. We all remember the song “Looking for love in all the wrong places.” Some people will do anything to be liked or appreciated.
They crave this close bonding relationship with anybody that gives them some time. Did you know there are people who try to buy friendships? I never really listened to Freddy Mercury’s music from the band Queen.
Growing up as an elementary kid playing basketball, I did not know he was the one who played the “We will rock you, and “We are the champions” songs I heard playing in the gym during our game. I also didn’t know anything about his life.
But since I’ve been a Christian for some time now, one day I looked at his biography. I never knew his lifestyle. But I noticed he had written a song about finding somebody to love him.
Here are a few lyrics. Can anybody find me somebody to love?
🎵 Ooh, each morning I get up I die a little. Can barely stand on my feet
(Take a look at yourself). Take a look in the mirror and cry (and cry). Lord, what you’re doing to me? (Yeah, yeah).
I have spent all my years in believing you
But I just can’t get no relief, Lord
Somebody (somebody), ooh, somebody (somebody). Can anybody find me, somebody to love? 🎵
Do you think Mr. Mercury was looking for love in all the wrong places? Do you think Jesus wanted that lifestyle for him? When we try to love the world and this sinful flesh more than Jesus, it leaves us empty and still searching for that utopian closeness.
A person will never find closeness living in (Romans 1:18-32; Galatians 5:16-25; 1 John 2:15-19). Belief is more than a mental belief of knowing someone exists. Did you know you could live next door to your neighbor for 20 years and never know them?
You might know them to see them but never be close enough to them to have a living relationship with them. Could it be there are many people out there like Mr. Mercury saying I believe Jesus, but not let his living words impact or change their lives or lifestyles?
There is a void in every heart that was created and reserved for God and God alone. We also have an adversary (Satan) who wants to steal, kill, and destroy, and keep us from giving that void (our heart) to God (John 10:10; Matthew 13:19-22; 2 Corinthians 2:11).
There are so many people on the earth looking for closeness in anyway than can. I remember a friend who was kind to everyone at work. He approached you and gave you a big bear hug and call you his “little brother.”
But inside he was so terribly lonely. One day I trained him in a specific job he needed help with. The company asked me to evaluate his performance after he was done. While on our lunchbreak he shared with me a heart wrenching story.
It seems he was so lonely one evening that he went to his local bar and offered to buy everyone drinks. He was having so much fun (at least he thought). But there were other sets of eyes that were watching him.
After the last call was shouted, he decided to invite some of those people to his home to continue the drinking. He had even given people money to put in their gas tanks. But the evening turned very ugly.
After the so-called friends he had decided to raid his fridge and left suddenly, there still remained a few shady characters who he really didn’t know.
These bought and paid for strangers decided to attack Mr. Tony and ransacked his entire home. They left him with an injured skull and took all his cash, expensive jewelry, and other items they could carry out of his home.
After hearing this tragic story, I started to cry for him. I put my hand on his shoulder and ask God to heal his loneliness. I told him trying to buy friends will leave you empty and devalued.
I also invited him and encouraged him to come to my men’s meeting. I also asked him was there a church near his area that he would feel comfortable building close relationships with.
But because he couldn’t part with the night life, he told me he would continue to hang with only people at the bar and not take them to his beautiful home. I told him people don’t have to come to your home to hurt you.
Some of the people at his local bar already knew he was a soft touch to hit on. He sort of reminds me of the rich young ruler Jesus spoke about. Something important to remember as you read these passages.
17} “And when he was gone forth into the way, there came one running, and kneeled to him, and asked him, Good Master, what shall I do that I may inherit eternal life? 18} And Jesus said unto him,Why callest thou me good? there is none good but one, that is, God.
19} Thou knowest the commandments, Do not commit adultery, Do not kill, Do not steal, Do not bear false witness, Defraud not, Honour thy father and mother. 20} And he answered and said unto him, Master, all these have I observed from my youth.
21} Then Jesus beholding him loved him, and said unto him, One thing thou lackest: go thy way, sell whatsoever thou hast, and give to the poor, and thou shalt have treasure in heaven: and come, take up the cross, and follow me.
22} And he was sad at that saying, and went away grieved: for he had great possessions.” (Mark 10:17-22 KJV). Take a look at verse 21 again. Sometimes people gloss over how Jesus deeply cared about this man.
Jesus genuinely loved this man. The Greek word (agapaō) loved, is how Jesus felt about this man. Jesus had emotional care towards this man. He wholly welcomed and entertained his thoughts. He was fond of, and dearly loved him.
Yes, of course this story points to not allowing our possessions or money keep us from following Jesus. Why? Because if we are not following him faithfully, whatever we grasp tightly will eventually suffocate or choke our hearts.
Jesus wanted this man’s heart more than his great possessions. Has anyone ever wanted to be close to you just because you had financial wealth, a nice home, or maybe an expensive car?
Sometimes people will carry impure motives just to take advantage of your kindness. Someone once said, “keep your friends close and your enemies closer.” This happened to Joshua and things didn’t work out to well for him and Israel (Joshua 9:4).
Jesus reached out to this man wanting to build a loving intimate relationship with him. God also from the very beginning wanted a bonding relationship with his creation.
I don’t have enough space to illustrate through the entire word of God where he desired that the people, he created would be closer to him. Let’s look at a few instances where God wanted to be closer to his people.
Most of you already knows what it means to be close to someone. But where many fail is how to put that closeness to action. Many people think closeness is about how they want to make themselves feel.
But God shows us a better way to be close. After Moses brought the people out of Egypt, he gave them God’s commandments to the people. All that God did for Israel was up close and personal. God fought their enemies.
4} “But ye that did cleave unto the LORD your God are alive every one of you this day. 7} For what nation is there so great, who hath God so nigh unto them, as the LORD our God is in all things that we call upon him for?” (Deuteronomy 4:4,7 KJV).
God continued to stay close to Israel, leading them into the promised land. He showed them what his relationship is like by spending forty days and nights with Moses in the mountain.
Moses returned with the glory of God on his face. His relationship with God would grow closer. Moses would later ask God to show him all his glory. (Exodus 33:18-23).
Today, everyone who is in heaven with Jesus has this glory closeness on their face. God would later speak to his prophet Samuel about Saul being replaced.
Samuel described this man as having a heart that would seek after God. “But now thy kingdom shall not continue: the LORD hath sought him a man after his own heart, and the LORD hath commanded him to be captain over his people, because thou hast not kept that which the LORD commanded thee.” (1 Samuel 13:14; Acts 13:22 KJV).
David would later write these words about his relationship with God during the time of jealousy from Saul who tried to take his life. David knew God would protect him from his enemies.
17} The righteous cry, and the LORD heareth, and delivereth them out of all their troubles. 18} The LORD is nigh unto them that are of a broken heart; and saveth such as be of a contrite spirit. 19} Many are the afflictions of the righteous: but the LORD delivereth him out of them all.” (Psalm 34:17-19 KJV).
Notice verse 18. God promises to be “close to the brokenhearted.” When you are going through trials in your life, the best thing to do is draw close to God’s heart. He wants to be your source of power, courage, and wisdom. Helping you through your problems.
God continued this reaching out with love towards Israel, even though they continued to sin and reject him. But throughout the Old Testament, David’s words would testify of God’s loving kindness and presence towards us.
4} “Who redeemeth thy life from destruction; who crowneth thee with lovingkindness and tender mercies; 5} Who satisfieth thy mouth with good things; so that thy youth is renewed like the eagle’s.” (Psalm 103:4-5 KJV).
The prophet Isaiah understood the comforting and closeness of God. (Isaiah 6:5-8). Before God could be up close and personal, Isaiah realized his sinfulness before God.
When one of the seraphim touched Isaiah’s lips with a burning coal, however, he told Isaiah that Isaiah’s sins were forgiven. The coal didn’t cleanse him; God did.
[Isaiah speaks more about the Messiah than any other Old Testament prophet. He describes the Messiah as both the suffering Servant and the sovereign Lord.]
The Lord is characterized by unfailing love throughout Scripture. God described himself to Moses this way: “Yahweh! The LORD! The God of compassion and mercy!”
[The painful cleansing process was necessary before Isaiah could fulfill the task to which God was calling him. Today, the cross is our “burning coal,” representing how Jesus’ death cleanses us.]
There are many people today who want to be close to Jesus but are unwilling to give up their worldly passions. They want Jesus (the hot coal) but want to keep their sinful lifestyle.
When the Holy God of Israel desires to be close to you, you must be cleansed as Isaiah was. Getting rid of sin opens the door of closeness. Letting God purify us may be painful, but we must be purified so that we can truly represent God, who is pure and holy.
As we keep moving and seeing the closeness of God from the
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Old Testament to the New Testament, Jeremiah (the weeping prophet) needed the closeness of God.
Have you ever needed someone to hold you close after losing a loved one or after a messy hurtful divorce? How about losing a son or daughter in the armed forces? Maybe you haven’t heard from your son or daughter who ran away from home?
It’s difficult to bring up painful stories that people carry for years and years with broken hearts. They try everything to alleviate the pain and stop the tears. Some end up hurting themselves because the love of their life was taken.
God really does understand the brokenhearted (Luke 4:18). He always has the perfect remedy for your sadness or loneliness. He’s called the greatest physician for good reason.
His love and words touch the human condition greater than any person on earth. If you need closeness, there is no better person than Jesus. That’s why the title of this site appeals to every age who needs someone to be close to them.
After you keep trying every prescribed thing that man offers you, why not “TRY JESUS!” Let’s continue with Jeremiah. The prophet Jeremiah was called of God. He prophesied about the coming Messiah who would establish a new covenant with his people.
[Jeremiah was poor and underwent severe deprivation to deliver his prophecies. He was rejected by many people. But he knew about the closeness of God. He lived a life of trust and obedience.]
The Lord revealed these words to Jeremiah how Israel would be restored after their Babylonian captivity. 3} The LORD hath appeared of old unto me, saying, Yea, I have loved thee with an everlasting love: therefore, with lovingkindness have I drawn thee.
4} Again I will build thee, and thou shalt be built, O virgin of Israel: thou shalt again be adorned with thy tabrets, and shalt go forth in the dances of them that make merry.” (Jeremiah 31:3-4 KJV).
“And I will satiate the soul of the priests with fatness, and my people shall be satisfied with my goodness, saith the LORD.” (Jeremiah 31:14 KJV).
“But this shall be the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel; After those days, saith the LORD, I will put my law in their inward parts, and write it in their hearts; and will be their God, and they shall be my people.” (Jeremiah 31:33 KJV).
Also verses 25-34. By reading these words from God, you can see and hear his consistency in wanting to be close to his people. God is an in your face, heart, and life type of God. He refuses to be in a distant relationship with people.
Have you ever heard of some married couples who seem to always need a break from each other? They plan separate events and hang out with friends more than each other.
Some will even take separate vacations from each other. Sometimes that can be a recipe for divided hearts and infiltration from outside forces. God desires to stay close, as in contact touching.
Have you ever seen two couples together that seem inseparable? Sometimes you only need a few moments of conversation to determine “these two were made for each other.” Now that is what closeness is all about.
David and Jonathan had such a relationship as close friends (1 Samuel 20:42). David and Jonathan had a friendship that made each a stronger person.
They trusted each other completely and were loyal to each above anyone else. They came from a common trust in God almighty. They also practiced what living agape really means (1 Samuel 18:1-3).
The Hebrew word soul (nephesh) which is the breath, and that which breathes. It is the breathing substance or being, soul, the inner being of man. This was knit (qâshar) together with David’s soul.
The friendship between the two men was tied and joined together. They were bound together with their minds and hearts. Sadly, many people have no one like this in their lives.
God’s friendship with us goes even deeper and forever eternal. It always is portrayed as steady and strong, the agape kind. God seeks our best; God loves us deeply. We should also know God as a friend.
He stays with us when all others leave. Wow! What an amazing God he is! As we move from the Old Testament to the New Testament, we see that God continued to seek after a broken world to restore a loving bonding relationship.
Once God sent his only son everything would be peachy creamy, right? (John 3:16). Jesus (just like his Father before him came desiring to be one with his people (Luke 4:18).
During his ministry, the Pharisees and Sadducees were always trying to find ways of discrediting Jesus and causing division among the people. They even tried to use the marriage relationship to trap him.
[But Jesus told the Pharisees, “What therefore God hath joined together, let not man put asunder” (Matthew 19:6). Marriage is of God. He joined (Greek sunezeuksen, “yoked”) male and female together. It was brazen for anyone to pull them apart.]
From the very beginning of his ministry Jesus spoke about genuine love and unity to his followers. But just as Israel resisted, rejected, and were stiff neck towards God, many treated Jesus the same way.
The Bible says, 17} He was in the world, and the world was made by him, and the world knew him not. 11} He came unto his own, and his own received him not.” (John 1:10-11 KJV).
Jesus loved his people so much, he wanted to take them in his arms and protect them like a hen would protect her chicks. But they wouldn’t allow him too (Matthew 23:37-39).
[Many times we feel wounded, outcast, lonely, or afraid and don’t know where to turn. We reject Jesus’ help because we’re not sure he can give us what we need. But who knows our needs better than our creator?]
Because they wouldn’t allow Jesus to be close to them, their house was left desolate. The Greek word desolate (erēmos) means to be lonesome. Not just in a physical sense but also in a spiritual sense. It’s to be in a solitary, lonely, uninhabited position.
Jesus doesn’t want us to be isolated and watch the enemy (Satan) destroy our lives. He’s not calling us to draw near for his own benefit. Just as husband and wives should be together in an unselfish relationship.
Paul told husbands to love their wives as Jesus loves his church. (Ephesians 5:25-30). That’s what I call being close. The Christian marriage relationship is a visual representation of how close Jesus wants to be with us.
And nothing hurts more than when your spouse’s loving advances are rejected. I’m not just speaking about the advances in the bedroom. I’m speaking about being totally shut out emotionally.
It’s like hearing those words that businesses sometimes will use towards other business associates, “your services are no longer required.” Today, many are married in “name only.” Even though they live in the same house, they are like two ships that pass in the night.
Falling out of love with someone when the other person still feels a oneness connection is excruciating and painful to their heart. I know exactly how that felt as a teenager. I watched someone step on my heart with another person.
No one likes to be rejected and alone. The great thing about the Lord is, he’s in this closeness thing with you from beginning to end. Many women that found a living breathing relationship with Jesus was better than any relationship they had on earth.
They knew this is the man that would always love them, never cheat on them, never harm them, and never demean or slander them. Jesus is the man every woman should want. The Bible tells us to seek first the Kingdom of God (Matthew 6:33).
Paul spoke about this seeking in the book of Acts. 27} “That they should seek the Lord, if haply they might feel after him, and find him, though he be not far from every one of us: 28} For in him we live, and move, and have our being; as certain also of your own poets have said, For we are also his offspring.” (Acts 17:27-28 KJV). God created us to be with us, it’s that simple.
[God is revealed in his creation and is close to every one of us. But he is not trapped in his creation. God is transcendent. God is the Creator, not the creation. God is sovereign and in control, while at the same time he is close and personal.]
But as the people in Jesus’ day would reject his love and crucify him, he still continued to love them. In the Old Testament God’s power would come upon people. But Jesus told his disciples that there was coming a power that would be in them (Acts 1:4-8).
This leads me to the most powerful way of all God would be close to us. Jesus loved his disciples very deeply. John was very much a part of that love (John 13:21-27). So much that he would breathe on them a foretaste of what was coming. (John 20:22). John, along with Peter and James were the inner three who were closest to Jesus.
He told them of his impending death, and they were saddened by it (John 16:6,27). Previously Philip asked Jesus to show them the Father. But Jesus told him “When you’ve seen me, you’ve seen the Father.”
Jesus would further go on to say these powerful words to his disciples. 15} “If ye love me, keep my commandments. 16} And I will pray the Father, and he shall give you another Comforter, that he may abide with you for ever;
17} Even the Spirit of truth; whom the world cannot receive, because it seeth him not, neither knoweth him: but ye know him; for he dwelleth with you, and shall be in you. 18} I will not leave you comfortless: I will come to you.” (John 14:15-18 KJV).
The comforter and the Spirit of truth are names given to the Holy Spirit. It is he whom Jesus spoke about coming to live inside the disciples. This would take place on the day of Pentecost. He is called the Holy Spirit of promise.
This promise came to fruition in (Acts 2:1-4). Today, the person of the Holy Spirit (he is a person, not some electrical force) lives with us and in us. He teaches us. He reminds us of Jesus’ words.
[He convicts us of sin, shows us God’s righteousness, and announces God’s judgment on evil. He guides us into truth and gives insight into future events. He brings glory to Jesus.]
[The Holy Spirit has been active among people from the beginning of time, but after Pentecost, he came to live in all believers. Many people are unaware of the Holy Spirit’s activities.]
Especially those who are religious and not born-again (Romans 8:9-11). But to those who understand Jesus’ words and the Spirit’s power, the Spirit gives a whole new way to look at life. The Holy Spirit lives within all who believe in Jesus Christ.
If you have not received Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior, then it doesn’t matter how much church attendance you have or read books on religion, you are not saved (Spiritually reborn).
First, you need to confess your sins and recognize that Jesus has already paid the price for your sin. Then you can receive God’s forgiveness who will remember your sin no more.
Then you can get on with the business of going to church and reading about God. But this time you will be led by the Spirit of God and not by religious devils. The Holy Spirit will guide you into all truth.
🗣📢 Last words: Before we close for the day, here are some practical ways to draw close to God. Which is simply coming closer to God spiritually.
1) Prayer: Talk to God every day. Not like you might talk to your pet or your television when your favorite team is losing. Schedule a time each day to spend time with God. The best way to draw closer to God is to listen to his voice.
Moses did it the right way, so did Jesus. (Exodus 24:18; 25:1; Mark 6:46; Mathew 6:6; 1 Thessalonians 5:17). If you’re not praying, you’re fainting. If you have time to worry, you have time to pray.
2) Read the Bible everyday: Soak yourself in the living pages of God’s Word. You can get really close to God by opening his word. Turn off the world at times so you can see God’s Word.
(2 Timothy 3:16-17; Psalm 119:105; Matthew 4:4; Romans 15:4; Hebrews 4:12; 1 Timothy 4:13; 1 Peter 2:2; 2 Timothy 2:15).
3) Meditate on God’s Word: If you keep your mind on God, you won’t have to get rid of some of the other garbage that Satan keeps trying to fill your mind with. (Psalm 1:2-3; 37:31; 119:15,97-99; Job 22:22; Joshua 1:8).
4) Identify prompting from the Holy Spirit: Like a child learning to distinguish it’s mothers or fathers voice from other voices, listen for those deep prompts from inside your spirit.
As you grow in God you will be able to discern and know the difference and between his Spirit, Satan, and the world’s voices. (Luke 2:27; 1 John 4:1-3; John 16:13; Romans 8:14-17; 26-27; Philippians 3:15).
5) Listen to worship music that Glorifies God: There is some much sound and noise in the world. Did you know God can discern between anointed music (that reaches his throne) secular music, and religious music?
True worship towards God involves him as the object of our worship. Some people think you can worship without God being a part of it. There’s a reason why God accepts Abel’s sacrifice and not Cain’s.
God always looks at the motives of the heart. Sometimes motives to worship God could be monetary. It could be worldly. We should always allow the Holy Spirit to direct us in the true worship of God.
(John 4:23-24; Ephesians 5:19; Colossians 3:16-17; 1 Samuel 16:23; Psalm 9:2; 150:1-6; Jeremiah 31:4; Exodus 15:20; 2 Chronicles 5:13; Zephaniah 3:17).
6) Keep a daily gratitude list: Take time to thank God for all the things he has done and provided for you. If you can keep all those sticky notes on your fridge about the family activities, why not give God a nice sticky of thanks.
(Psalms 95:2; 103:2-5; 107:1-3; Philippians 4:6-7; 11-13; 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18; Lamentations 3:22-24).
7) Intercede for others: Getting in the practice of telling others I got your back in prayer can be a huge encouragement for them. Prayer involving Intercession takes sacrifice on behalf of a life that’s hurting. Serious Intercession can also involve fasting.
(1 Timothy 2:1-3; Jeremiah 7:16; 1 Samuel 12:23-25; Matthew 9:27-29; James 5:15-16; Job 16:21; Numbers 12:13; Nehemiah 1:4-11; Acts 7:6).
8) Connect with a small group: Sometimes less can be more. It’s always great to connect with like-minded people who are on the same journey as you.
Connecting with small groups can sometimes have an advantage over large groups because the intimacy can be more binding and create an accountability towards one another.
(2 Timothy 2:2-3; Acts 2:42-47; Hebrews 10:24-25; 1 Corinthians 13:26; Ephesians 4:11-13). Getting involved in small groups can also help in learning to serve one another in needs that may be expressed.
God is the great changer of hearts, the lifter of attitudes. As you give him the things that darken your day, he can be the sunshine in your soul. When you turn to him and pray, he delights in lifting your hearts heaviness and giving you a spirit of gratefulness.
[The more you abide in God’s Word and in his presence, the more you will hear his voice and the more victorious and successful you will be in every area of life. The Word says God is a rewarder of those who diligently seek him (Hebrews 11:6).]
“Come on everybody, get closer!”
📕 Here’s some more words to hold close to your heart. (Psalm 139:7-8; 13-18; 145:18-20; Zephaniah 3:17).
🛐 Here’s a prayer you can pray to draw a little bit closer. “Heavenly Father, thank you for today’s uplifting message. Lord, I have been so alone lately. I have searched everywhere to find closeness from anyone that might love or care for me.
But each time I get pushed away. I have had many thoughts about ending my life because I feel as if no one wants me. But as I found this message today, Lord, I really want to stop trying to find love and closeness my way, and try your way.
Lord, please prepare my heart to receive your love. I need you and want to know you. Reveal any anxieties and worries I have not given to you and lead me to you. Cleanse my mind and my heart, Lord Jesus.
I learned today from “TRY JESUS” that
nothing can separate me from your love. Thank you for never giving up on me. Your word says when I call upon you, you hear me and save me. Lord, remind me of these truths today.
I have a broken and contrite spirit, remind me that you are close to me through this season. I know no matter what happens, my identity as your child never changes. You have chosen me, and you call me a “royal priesthood!”
Thank you, Jesus, that your work on the cross gives me an eternal identity. You have clothed me in a new, clean, and pure garment of salvation. I will praise your name forever. Even when you feel far away, you are close, in Jesus’ name, amen.”
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Members of “TRY JESUS” The Body of Christ. Please remember to participate in the communion of our Lord. (1 Corinthians 11:23-30).
“The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you.”
Pastor Todd Boxley
Worship Center Ministry