Our goal for the New Year is growing closer to God. It’s such a blessing beginning a new year growing closer to God. God has assignments for us to complete in the New Year, and in order to do the assignments He asks, we must spend time in prayer and in His presence. to do as He asks, we must spend time growing closer to Him.
If you want to grow closer to God in the New Year, you have to distance yourself from the distractions, and the challenges that hold you back.
When we allow other things, such as worries, fears, questions, unresolved ideas, pressing tasks to consume our lives we drift away from God. However, we can’ t allow these things to take us away from God.
To grow closer to God, we need to identify and avoid the things that distract us from him. He should always be top priority.
Now, this is eternal life: that they know you, the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom you have sent. John 17:3(NIV)
What Does It Mean to Grow Closer to God?
But seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be added to you. MATTHEW 6:33
Getting closer to God is not difficult, it’s spending time with Him. It’s having a personal relationship with Him. God likes it when you spend time in His presence.
Spending time with the Holy Spirit helps us grow closer to Christ. And because we’re opening up about the most important and intimate part of our lives, we grow closer to Him. The Holy spirit draws us closer to God.
There are so many wonderful benefits to getting closer to God. When we seek God, he manifests and show himself strong in our lives every time.
When he shows himself, and we see just how present he is in our lives, we begin to see transformation in how we see the world and how the world sees us.
Our lives are made completely better when we draw near to God. When we spend time in his presence and find different ways to grow our faith, we are able to live the life he planned for us.
When we choose to draw near to God, He draws near to us. When we focus on God’s presence in our lives, we are reminded of the truth that when Jesus overcame the world, he overcame everything. That means that the uncertainty and brokenness around us are momentary. Victory is ours.
How Can I Grow Closer to God Through Prayer?
If you want to grow closer to Jesus this year, being intentional in prayer is vital. We pray to get to know God’s heart. We pray because prayer is powerful and because the Word commands us to pray. We pray because our relationship with God is just that—a relationship.
So many of us want to make the most of our prayer time, but we struggle with how to pray with confidence. I believe praying with confidence is what we lack in our prayer time.
If you are like me, I need to stay focused and intentional during my prayer time or else I will begin going in a different direction.
Like all relationships, our relationship with God requires hard work, time, consistency, and intentionality to grow and thrive.
Have you ever found yourself longing for a deeper walk with God? A more intimate relationship with God, but you just weren’t sure where to even begin?
I know you are wondering what I do every day to get closer to Him. I just spend time alone in His presence, and I ask Him to renew me, work in me and shape me into the woman I need to be as I get into His Word. And I commit to following hard after Him, no matter what.
Just praying and spending time in His presence, and allowing the Holy Spirit to work in me, helps me grow ever closer to God — pressing into Him so He makes the deepest impression on me.
In Luke 9:23b, Jesus tells His disciples, “Whoever wants to be my disciple must deny themselves and take up their cross daily and follow me.”
His words seem surprising at first. The disciples had already given up everything to follow Jesus. Or so it seemed … Family. Friends. Jobs. The comforts of home. Everything!
12 Practical Ways to Grow Closer to God
God wants a relationship with us and promises to reward those who diligently seek Him. Those who draw closer to Him (Hebrews 11:6). Here are 12 Practical Ways for each of us to Grow Closer to God.
This is how we connect and talk with God. Prayer allows us to get answers from God. It’s an open line of communication that allows us to build a relationship with Him. Remember, prayer is about you and God, so be humble and don’t make a show of it to others. If your desire is to grow closer to God, then make prayer a priority in your life.
“But when you pray, go into your room, close the door and pray to your Father, who is unseen. Then your Father, who sees what is done in secret, will reward you” (Matthew 6:6 NIV).
2. Meditate on the Promises of God
Meditating on God’s Word Day and night requires that we have it hidden in our hearts. Keep your heart and mind focused on God by meditating on His Word all throughout the day.
Memorizing Scripture hides God’s Word in our heart. Memorizing Scripture makes us more like Christ because, like Christ, we can meditate on it, bring it to mind defeating the enemy and use it to weed out error and defend the faith.
3. Listen to the Holy Spirit. Once you’ve asked God to reveal His Holy Spirit to you, you must listen to Him.
But when he, the Spirit of truth, comes, he will guide you into all truth. He will not speak on his own; he will speak only what he hears, and he will tell you what is yet to come. He will bring glory to me by taking from what is mine and making it known to you. All that belongs to the Father is mine. That is why I said the Spirit will take from what is mine and make it known to you. John 16:13-15
Jesus tells us the Holy Spirit only speaks what He hears from God’s own mouth.
4.Schedule a Daily Prayer Time
If you ever struggled with distractions and interruptions while trying to pray knows this is true. But it’s also one of the most powerful, important, and joy-filled ways to connect with God.”
If you want to grow closer to Jesus this year, being intentional in prayer is vital. For years, I’ve had a daily prayer time.
Along with reading Scripture, that daily time with God has been the most influential decision I’ve made in my walk with Him. Sure, I’ve missed lots of days and sometimes I don’t “feel” it, but I’ve always been intentional to come back and not give up.
James urges people to get closer to God. “Come near to God and he will come near to you. Wash your hands, you sinners, and purify your hearts, you double-minded,” James 4:8.
By asking God to forgiving our sins, practicing humility, and transforming our thoughts with the word of God; we can become more like Christ and get closer to God.
As we focus less on ourselves and more on Him, we can be more submissive to Him when we hear His voice.
“My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me:” John 10:27
This seems to be the idea behind what it means to “draw near to God and He will draw near to you” (James 4:8). As we align our priorities, our desires, thoughts, and behaviors with what He prescribes, we find that we are walking with Him. Jesus talked about this in John 15, when He told His disciples they should “abide” in Him (John 15:4).
To glow closer to God in the new year, we are going to need to lay down everything. Our plans, and agendas. Maybe even our own lives and take up His.
And while it might sound like a lot to ask, because of their willingness to continue following hard after Jesus, they will experience a level of closeness with Him unlike anyone else.
5. Spend Time Studying the Word
To become like Christ, we must know him. To know Him, we must spend time with Him.
Paul was so excited about really knowing God, he said, “That I may know him, and the power of his resurrection, and the fellowship of his sufferings, being made conformable unto his death; Philippians 3:10. (KJV)
“The Bible is how we learn about God and how He wants us to live. It’s our life manual and marching orders, our perfect standard and what we evaluate everything else through.
Paul knew the value of studying the Bible and encouraged Timothy, his young charge, to continue studying the Scriptures which he’d done since his youth.
“All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, so that the servant of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work,” 2 Timothy 3:16.
6.Spend Time in Prayer.
Prayer is powerful. Jesus prayed often, and he always took time to get away by himself to pray.
“But Jesus often withdrew to lonely places and prayed,” Luke 5:16.
He spent whole nights in prayer and prayed deeply before and after crucial events. Before calling the 12 apostles, Jesus spent the night in prayer.
Before Jesus was arrested, tried, and crucified, he spent time in intense prayer. And after feeding the 5,000, Jesus went up to a mountain alone to pray.
“One day Jesus was praying in a certain place. When he finished, one of his disciples said to him, “Lord, teach us to pray,” Luke 11:1.
Jesus never allowed anything to keep him from prayer, an example for us if we want to become like him.
7. Walk in Love with one another.
Jesus said, “A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another. By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another,” John 13:34.
Believers are told to “be devoted to brotherly love,” Romans 12:10.
Loving others helps us become more like Christ as we learn what real love is and how to love. We learn to put others’ needs before our own, to forgive an offense, to encourage rather than envy, and to compassionately bear each other’s burdens.
“Therefore be imitators of God, as beloved children; and walk in love, just as Christ also loved you and gave Himself up for us,” Ephesians 5:1-2.
8. Spend Time with Him
So, one of the main things you can do is spend time with him. Just imagine that he is your friend (which he is), you would obviously dedicate time to spend with them. If you don’t spend time with them and talk to them how can your relationship grow?
9. Give thanks.
When we properly show gratitude by obeying God’s commandments, we’re acknowledging what He’s done for us.
10. Repent of sins.
If we confess our sins to God, He will forgive them and make us right (1 John 1:9). However, if we deliberately sin, His sacrifice no longer remains (Hebrews 10:26). So, if you’re struggling with a particular sin, it’s better to remove yourself from any environment where you’ll be tempted to act on that sin (Matthew 5:29).
11. Fall in Love with Jesus
We love God with all our hearts. Tell Him how much you love and appreciate him.
12. Trust Him and Give Him your heart
It’s difficult to have a personal relationship with someone you don’t trust. With everything that’s going on in the world today, it’s difficult trusting people.
But, God is trustworthy. You can trust him with your whole heart and soul and be confident that he won’t ever let you down.
You can trust him with your private conversations. We will not repeat it. You can tell him when you feel angry, or when you feel afraid; you can trust him when you’ve sinned or fallen short and be confident that he won’t turn you away.
You can tell him your deepest, darkest secrets and the hidden struggles you’d never want anyone else to know about. After all, he’s the only one who can heal you from those things to begin with.
God already knows how you feel inside. Tell God whatever you feel inside. He’s God – he’s not offended by the thoughts in your heart. Let him help you process them.
How Do You Grow a Deeper Relationship with God?
It’s the Holy spirit that is drawing you to a deeper relationship with God. He’s working in you to will and to do of His good pleasure. God’s word is filled with promises and commandments for us. To grow closer to Him, it is vital that we read our Bibles!
Always spend time in the word and in prayer. Make sure that you are focused on only God and that you are not placing anything above your relationship with Him. God wants to know each of his children intimately, and that includes you.
When you get in the word daily, you allow the Holy Spirit to move in your life. The more I started getting in His Word, the more I noticed Him around me in everyday life.
It was such an incredible time in my life because God would prove Himself to me every single day. I realized that God was always there, yet there were countless distractions that made me inattentive to His presence in my life.
If you’re one who has never really heard from God, I encourage you to get in the Word every single day.
Once you do this, you will learn exactly what God thinks about you, the truth of His word, and, as a result, you will start to develop a deeper relationship with Him.
A relationship that will keep you in His presence. When you reach this point, you end up seeing God in all things.
If you want to develop a deeper connection with the Lord, here are some ideas that I strongly encourage you to pursue.
Surround yourself with Christian friends.
You learn from who you associate yourself with. Surround yourself with Christians who love Jesus. People that will encourage you and strengthen you in the Lord.
Get in the Word Every Day.
Yes, to grow closer to God, we have to get into the Word of God. The only way you grow closer with anyone is through communication – and God communicates with us through His Word
Hearing from God every day comes from developing a deeper relationship with Him – this all starts with knowing who He really is, which directly comes from the Bible.
The way you mature a relationship with, let’s say, a friend, is the same way you must develop a richer relationship with God; this includes familiarizing yourself with Him: reading the Bible, talking to Him more often, trusting in Him, etc.
Paul says, “for the word of God is alive and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart. (Hebrews 4:12)
The more you get in the word, it will manifest the life of God in you. Meaning that the word will come alive in you.
Listen to praise and worship music.
Praise and worship bring you in the presence of the Lord. Music has a way of touching people’s hearts in a way that words cannot. “God inhabits the praise of His people,”
Psalm 22:3, which says of God, “But thou art holy, O thou that inhabitest the praises of Israel.”
How to Get Closer to God Spiritually?
But the Advocate, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, will teach you all things and will remind you of everything I have said to you. John 14:26(NIV)
Draw near to God, and he will draw near to you. Cleanse your hands, you sinners, and purify your hearts, you double-minded. James 4:8(NIV)
In the Old Testament, people communicated with God through prophets and priests. But now, we can go boldly into God’s throne of grace when we need to talk to God, to find help when we need it.
The life of Moses is marked by so many encounters with God. He was a man that walked with God. Moses was a man anointed by God to fulfill God’s heart for his children to be free from captivity and safe under his lordship.
From birth, Moses was divinely set apart to lead God’s people back into right relationship with God. And this calling was fulfilled because of God’s desire to consistently meet with Moses and show up through his life in miraculous ways.
In looking at the life of Moses, two types of encounters with God stand out as especially transformative and illustrative of God’s heart to meet with his people.
First, Exodus 3:1-6 gives us insight into the first real encounter Moses had with the Great I Am. Scripture says,
Now Moses was keeping the flock of his father-in-law, Jethro, the priest of Midian, and he led his flock to the west side of the wilderness and came to Horeb, the mountain of God. And the angel of the Lord appeared to him in a flame of fire out of the midst of a bush. He looked, and behold, the bush was burning, yet it was not consumed. And Moses said, “I will turn aside to see this great sight, why the bush is not burned.” When the Lord saw that he turned aside to see, God called to him out of the bush, “Moses, Moses!” And he said, “Here I am.” Then he said, “Do not come near; take your sandals off your feet, for the place on which you are standing is holy ground.” And he said, “I am the God of your father, the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob.” And Moses hid his face, for he was afraid to look at God.
You and I have access to relationship far greater than a face-to-face encounter like Moses had.
We have God’s Spirit within us fellowshipping with the Holy Spirit. True restored relationship finds its source in continual, unending encounters with God’s presence dwelling with us and upon us.
We long to have intimacy with the Holy Spirit, right? But if we are honest, only a few of us enjoy a close relationship with Him.
It’s not that those who enjoy intimacy with the Spirit of God are special people. They are ordinary people like us, but they go the extra mile to get close to him.
Our relationship with the Holy Spirit starts at the point of salvation. But we become intimate with him when we surrender to his leading.
Like other relationships in our lives, our relationship with the Holy Spirit needs to be developed and nurtured.
What Does the Bible Say About Getting Closer to God?
Even the apostle Paul, desired a close relationship as one could have with God in this life, still longed for a closer relationship: “Indeed, I count everything as loss because of the surpassing worth of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord.
For his sake I have suffered the loss of all things and count them as rubbish, in order that I may gain Christ and be found in him, not having a righteousness of my own that comes from the law, but that which comes through faith in Christ.”
(Philippians 3:8-9). No matter where we are in our walk with Christ. No matter what level of faith we are. We can always have a closer walk, and, even glorified in heaven, we will have all eternity to grow in our relationship with the Lord.
Luke 9:23 And he said to all, “If anyone would come after me, let him deny himself and take up his cross daily and follow me.
Jeremiah 23:23-24 “Am I a God at hand, declares the Lord, and not a God far away? Can a man hide himself in secret places so that I cannot see him? declares the Lord. Do I not fill heaven and earth? declares the Lord.
Draw near to God and He will draw near to you. Cleanse your hands, you sinners; and purify your hearts, you double-minded. James 4:8
This and other bible verses about growing closer to God are clear. When we draw near to God, he draws near to us. This doesn’t mean that he is far away either. It means that our father, will not force himself on you. Instead, he will love on you and wait for you to look for him, and when you do, you will realize he was there all the time.
The Importance of Growing Closer to God
When we are getting to know someone special, you take the time to build on that foundation (relationship) You enjoy spending time with them. You enjoy their company. You enjoy fellowship with them. You enjoy the time spent with them, even to the point, when they leave, you can’t wait to see them again. That’s how we feel about our relationship with Him. But we all, at one time or another, struggle with spending time with God.
Psalm 62:8 says, “Trust in him at all times, you people; pour out your hearts to him, for God is our refuge.”
When you pour out your heart to God, you give him a chance to speak to you. This builds the connection between you and him.
Prayer to Get Closer to God
Father, In the Name of Jesus, Lord, show me what stands in the way of intimacy with You, and give me the strength to lay it down — for a season or maybe even forever. I long to be closer to You. No matter the cost.
God you are always with me, and I believe you hear my prayers. James 4:8 says, “Draw nigh to God, and he will draw nigh to you….”
Thank You, Lord, for drawing near to me in my time of need. I stand firmly on Hebrews 4:16: “Let us then fearlessly and confidently and boldly draw near to the throne of grace (the throne of God’s unmerited favor to us sinners), that we may receive mercy [for our failures] and find grace to help in good time for every need [appropriate help and well-timed help, coming just when we need it].” There is no fear in me. I receive mercy where I have failed and I boldly and confidently approach the throne of grace, where I know I will receive timely help, because God loves me. In Jesus Name. Amen
Free Bible Reading Printable for the New Year
Yes, this is indeed a FREE Reading Bible Vere printable for you to download and enjoy! You can use it as decoration in your home or print and frame the scriptures as a gift for a friend or family member to enjoy and bring encouragement to their life.