Day 5: James 4:1-10
What causes fights and quarrels among you? Don’t they come from your desires that battle within you? You desire but do not have, so you kill. You covet but you cannot get what you want, so you quarrel and fight. You do not have because you do not ask God. When you ask, you do not receive, because you ask with wrong motives, that you may spend what you get on your pleasures. You adulterous people, don’t you know that friendship with the world means enmity against God? Therefore, anyone who chooses to be a friend of the world becomes an enemy of God. Or do you think Scripture says without reason that he jealously longs for the spirit he has caused to dwell in us ? But he gives us more grace. That is why Scripture says: “God opposes the proud but shows favor to the humble.” Submit yourselves, then, to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you. Come near to God and he will come near to you. Wash your hands, you sinners, and purify your hearts, you double-minded. Grieve, mourn and wail. Change your laughter to mourning and your joy to gloom. Humble yourselves before the Lord, and he will lift you up. (James 4:1-10 NIV)
How can you come near to God? James gives you five ways.
1) Submit to God.
2) Resist the devil.
3) Wash your hands and purify your hearts (lead a pure life).
4) Grieve and mourn, and wail. Don’t be afraid to express sorrow for what you’ve done.
5) Humble yourself before The Lord.
Humbling ourselves means recognizing that our worth comes from God alone. To be humble involves working with his power according to his guidance, not our own independent effort. Although we do not deserve Gods favor, he reaches out to us in love and gives us worth and dignity, despite our human short comings.