I can tell you about times God was far away, times I looked to the sky and cried out for him to come close and show himself because life was too hard, times I ran to find a place to hide myself because I was ashamed of who I had become, times I thought God ran away because he couldn’t stand me anymore.
When God is far away, life gets harder.
A far away God is not there when I need him and can’t catch me when I fall. In fact, there are a lot of things a far away God can’t do.
Acts 17:27 “His purpose was for the nations to seek after God and perhaps feel their way toward him and find him—though he is not far from any one of us.”
The truth is that God is never out of reach in a galaxy far, far away. Even at my worst, all I had to do was seek him and there he was.
Those times I cried out to God and he wasn’t there was not due to God being on vacation. It was because I was crying out for another god, one that saw things the way I wanted him to see them, one that followed me around as I lived in disobedience and cleaned up after me.
Acts 17:22 So Paul, standing before the council, addressed them as follows: “Men of Athens, I notice that you are very religious in every way, 23 for as I was walking along I saw your many shrines. And one of your altars had this inscription on it: ‘To an Unknown God.’ This God, whom you worship without knowing, is the one I’m telling you about.”
Too often, I have made God the unknown God. He is the one I worship without knowing, the one that I mold into an image of myself because I don’t come to know his greatness.
Instead, I serve the gods that I love and know intimately, gods of things, gods of my emotions and feelings, my fears and my lust and then I wonder why God is so far away. I am too busy seeking other gods to find the one true God.
I need to give up on my religion, my pride and pretty much everything else that starts with the word “my” and stop trying to find God in those things. I need to seek him where he is and take him where I go.
Acts 17:24 “He is the God who made the world and everything in it. Since he is Lord of heaven and earth, he doesn’t live in man-made temples, 25 and human hands can’t serve his needs—for he has no needs. He himself gives life and breath to everything, and he satisfies every need.”
I need to seek the God that extends beyond where I can put him, that needs nothing but gives everything and allow him to satisfy my every need. I will always find him for he is never far away.