JANUARY 2nd…..CLOSE!! GET CLOSER!! How many close friends do you have? Who is your closest friend? When you think about the ones that you make sacrifices to spend time with, go out of your way to do them with them, and you feel confident you can share anything with, you probably can count them on one hand. Not many people are willing to pay the price required to get close to one another. We are content to have casual relationships and spend time with one another only when it is convenient. Sadly enough, many people treat God like a casual friend. They are not willing to spend the time and effort it takes to have a close relationship with Him. (James 4:7-8 Submit yourselves, them to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you. 8. Come near to God and he will come near to you. Wash your hands, you sinners, and purify your hearts, you double-minded.) We had people at our home over the holidays that we have grown really close to. We didn’t establish that relationship overnight, we spent the time and effort to allow it to grow. My prayer for 2023 is to spend the time and give the effort to grow spiritually. God doesn’t ask for all of our time. God expects us to work and to have fun and be entertained. But, God expects us to spend time with Him so our relationship can grow deeper. Just like the relationships with our earthly friends, our relationship with our Heavenly Father can only grow when we put forth the effort to allow it to grow. Get closer to God this year. Put forth the effort. It will be worth your time. Pastor Don