There was a time in my life when I was afraid to give all of who I was to God. In many ways, I still loved the world and was worried about what would happen when I truly relinquished control of my life to Christ. I didn’t want to lose the reigns or those cherished sins that I made excuses for and didn’t want to let go of. My life was an un-submitted life in which I offered the devil very little resistance. Therefore, it was a life that was lacking in spiritual power.
Yet in his epistle, James relays to us an incredible promise of God. He says, “Draw near to God and He will draw near to you.” Deep in our hearts we all crave nearness with God because there is an unhappy void; a God-shaped hole that we are helpless to fill. Blaise Pascal said it best when he wrote:
“What else does this craving, and this helplessness, proclaim but that there was once in man a true happiness, of which all that now remains is the empty print and trace? This he tries in vain to fill with everything around him, seeking in things that are not there the help he cannot find in those that are, though none can help, since this infinite abyss can be filled only with an infinite and immutable object; in other words by God himself.”
James offers us hope of the nearness of God. But our hands must be emptied of the counterfeit before they can be filled with the blessings of God; our hearts must have sin removed from them in order to make way for the presence of God; we must be transformed by the renewing of our minds so that we can begin to think like Christ. And therefore James says, “Cleanse your hands, you sinners; and purify your hearts, you double-minded. Lament and mourn and weep! Let your laughter be turned to mourning and your joy to gloom. Humble yourselves in the sight of the Lord, and He will lift you up.”
I remember that when I truly gave my life to Christ, what felt like an incredible weight was lifted off my shoulders. There are no other words to explain it other than that I felt a tremendous release from the burden of sin. God did lift me up that day. And He promises to lift up all who come to Him in this kind of surrender. Are you near Him today?
Almighty God of truth and love,
to me thy power impart;
the mountain from my soul remove,
the hardness from my heart.
O may the least omission pain
my reawakened soul,
and drive me to that blood again,
which makes the wounded whole.
Pastor Cameron Ury
Senior Pastor and Teacher at Renton Park Chapel
16760 128th Ave. SE
Renton WA 98058
Rev. Cameron Ury graduated from Asbury University in 2007 with a B.A. in Bible and Theology. From there he continued his studies at Wesley Biblical Seminary in Jackson, MS. It was there that he met his wife Tanya, who graduated from WBS with her M.A. and M.Div. degrees. Cameron and Tanya got married in 2009. Cameron then graduated with his M.Div. degree with a pastoral concentration in 2011.
After shepherding churches in both Mississippi and Ohio, they joined the ministry team at Renton Park Chapel in January of 2018, where Cameron serves as Senior Pastor and Teacher.
Cameron is also the founder and host of Lechem Panim, a weekly radio show that airs on KGNW 820AM "The Word Seattle". The ministry of Lechem Panim is centered around leading people into the life-giving presence of God in and through Bible study, prayer, and active discipleship with the aim of ministering to a world that is in desperate need of the healing touch of Jesus Christ.