“4 You adulteresses, do you not know that friendship with the world is hostility toward God? Therefore whoever wishes to be a friend of the world makes himself an enemy of God. 5 Or do you think that the Scripture speaks to no purpose: “He jealously desires the Spirit which He has made to dwell in us”? 6 But He gives a greater grace. Therefore it says, “God is opposed to the proud, but gives grace to the humble.” James 4:4-6
The Book of James asks a very tough question found in verse four. It is not the least bit rhetorical. It is very practical, and essential. Those who answer it honestly will change their behavior, and align themselves with the will of The Father.
Nothing will improve your prayer life more than coming to grips with the truth of, “Prayerlessness is pridefulness.” You prostitute yourself by turning any ministry into your mistress. Pleasing yourself was never meant to be your business. Selling out to the word should never be turned into your full-time job.
The Westminster Confession asks a great question too. What is the chief purpose of man? Answer: To love God and to enjoy Him forever.
Enjoy God? WOW. Who knew? The world paints a close relationship with God as either a fanatical passion or a pathetic pursuit. Spending time with The Father often appears to be robbing you of time that could be better spent enjoying more worldly pursuits.
Scripture makes it very clear. Being called an adulteress is pretty strong language. It is not a compliment, but an open rebuke. Don’t wear it as a badge of honor.
Rubbing up against the world should never become your way of getting your strokes. It should make your skin crawl and the hair on the back of your neck stand up.
At the turn of the 20th Century, Evangelist Billy Sunday was accused of preaching too strong of a message against worldly living. Having stepped out of the world of professional baseball to become a preacher of The Gospel, he called for the church to realign themselves with the will and the way of The Father. One irritated critic said, “Sunday, you rub the fur of the cat the wrong way.” Sunday responded. “Let the cat turn around.”
When friendship with the world begins to feel like a comfort to you, you have become deceived. Pleasing yourself and others at the expense of failing to please The Father, may give an initial sense of satisfaction. Any temporary relief from the battle against evil is short-lived and rarely life giving.
Personal preferences and pleasures bring comfort. That is why they are hard to turn down. They come to you like a small kitten, purring and climbing into your lap, seeking to be fed. The more you feed the kitty, the bigger it gets. Soon the purring kitty becomes a roaring lion, seeking you, and chasing you. The enemy has one goal. He seeks to devour you.
Note to Self: Don’t feed the kitty. Don’t let the world stroke your ego. Never feed your need to please yourself or others. Humble yourself and pray for The Father’s sense of direction, His protection and His correction. Turn around. Remember! “God is opposed to the proud, but He gives grace to the humble.” TALK LESS! PRAY MORE!