James 4:7-10 (NLT)

7 So humble yourselves before God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you. 8 Come close to God, and God will come close to you. Wash your hands, you sinners; purify your hearts, for your loyalty is divided between God and the world. 9 Let there be tears for what you have done. Let there be sorrow and deep grief. Let there be sadness instead of laughter, and gloom instead of joy. 10 Humble yourselves before the Lord, and he will lift you up in honor.

In James chapter 4, James starts out by talking about the things that pull us away from God. Mainly we forget to ask God to meet our needs and instead turn to the world for answers. The world is influenced by Satan and sin which runs rampant. James says we should humble ourselves before God drawing closer so that God will draw closer to us. We are to move away from our sins, purifying our hearts; showing God we really do want to serve Him instead of the world. There can be sorrow for the sins committed, but God will remove those sins as far as the east is from the west and bring you back to a place of honor.

Thomas Merton (31 January 1915 – 10 December 1968) was a 20th century Catholic writer. A Trappist monk of the Abbey of Gethsemani, in the U.S. state of Kentucky, Merton was a poet, a social activist, a student of comparative religion as well as the author of numerous works on spirituality. He wrote more than 60 books, scores of essays and reviews, and is the subject of several biographies. There is a quote I want to use of his, “As soon as you are really alone, you are with God.” Take away the distractions of the world. Take away the influences of others who might lead you astray. Find solitude where you are completely alone and God will be there; that is His promise. Christ said He would never leave us nor forsake us. It is a promise we can count on. Sometimes we are forced to be alone because of circumstances. For example those who were locked away in isolation as prisoners of war; in those times they found the comfort of God. For some who have been deserted by family, God is there to offer hope. Find solitude, humble yourself before God seeking Him and God will seek you, find you and be with you.