“Draw nigh to God, and he will draw nigh to you. Cleanse your hands, ye sinners; and purify your hearts, ye double minded” (King James Version, James 4:8).
2020 for me was a time to draw near to God. With the prisons and jails closed to all unnecessary personnel, it gave me so much more time. Time to spend with my family to show them exactly why I trust in God.
Zephaniah is the ninth book of prophets in the Bible. Some may say it is my go-to book of the Bible. I do know for sure that it is a book I reference often to remind me of a time when God spoke loudly to my heart.
I say loudly because it was a time in my life when I was so broken that I knew that I had nowhere else to turn. No one in the world could help me better than the God that had been working so hard over the years to get my attention and I finally opened my ears to hear Him.
Verse one of the third chapter says, “Woe to her that is filthy and polluted, to the oppressing city!” Beginning with a warning and then stating the wrongs of the city; as you keep reading the chapter it moves to a description of what can happen if you decide to make things different.
In late 2013, I decided that I was ready for this change. A time when I knew that I could no longer keep doing things the way I saw fit. That my way no longer worked and I needed a change.
As you keep reading the chapter you will find that God is prepared to go beyond the mountains and the ocean to find the ones that are willing to come back to Him. Those that are willing to give it all up to serve the one that is never going to leave or forsake.
This for me is confirmation that when I was in the muck and mud of my life, God was always there holding my hand and enduring with me. So, when I am asked, “When you went through that bad situation, where was God?” I can say with confidence, “He was with me holding my hand.”
Moving on down to verse 14, “Sing, O daughter of Zion; shout, O Israel; be glad and rejoice with all your heart, O daughter of Jerusalem.” This reminds me of the chance I was given in 2019 to make a short video of my testimony to the Lord.
My daughter goes back at various times and watches the video and then shares with her friends. Recently she did that and one of them told me how cool it was to see it. This gave me a chance to proclaim God to her friend.
So, as we look into the face of 2021 and wonder what is next, keep in mind that God has always been with us and will always be ready to help us. His words will never fail and He will keep all His promises.