God is.

7 Where can I go from Your Spirit? Where can I flee from Your presence? 

8 If I go up to the heavens, You are there; if I make my bed in the depths, You are there. 

9 If I rise on the wings of the dawn, if I settle on the far side of the sea, 

10 even there Your hand will guide me, Your right hand will hold me fast.

Psalm 139:7-10

It is a very comforting reality that God is. He is over here, and over there, and right next to you. Our God is personally present everywhere at once. Check out Jeremiah 23:

Jeremiah 23:23-24   23 “Am I only a God nearby,” declares the LORD, “and not a God far away?  24 Can anyone hide in secret places so that I cannot see him?” declares the LORD. “Do not I fill heaven and earth?” declares the LORD.

Now I know that this truth is a bit mind blowing – it’s NOT that everything is God, but God is always personally present. God is omnipresent, but the sad reality is sometimes we don’t enter into His presence and miss out on the beauty, the wonder, and the splendor.

It’s like a couple that I saw eating together one night while Kristi and I were out to dinner (nothing fancy, I think it was Sugar Shack). Now I don’t know their story but they were present together, but not basking in the joy of their relationship. They each were reading something, and just like in a movie, one would look over with longing eyes to engage in conversation and notice the other was deep into reading and so that one went back to their private reading. At one point one started to speak and the other held up a finger as if to say, “Wait, what I am reading is more important”. As far as I could tell they did not enjoy much of each other’s company or presence.

It made me wonder if at times we are like that with God. We know God is with us (look up Hebrews 13:5b), yet we may not engage in conversation with Him (that’s called prayer) and we may not listen to Him (quieting our mind to see if He is speaking to us). Remember to apply what we talked about last week http://spedr.com/cbw2h about putting these thoughts to the test. Are we enjoying God’s presence?

 It’s kind of like the older brother in the story of the two brothers in Luke 15. The story is known by another name, but it’s really about two brothers and them enjoying God’s presence (why not read the story it’s found in Luke 15: 11-32). The story ends with the older brother angry at the father for giving great grace to the younger brother. See, the older brother was so busy at doing the right things, he missed the love, grace, splendor, fun, and joy of being in the father’s presence. He was so angry he would not even enjoy a great party the father had thrown for the younger son, again resisting the presence of the father.

 God is personally present among us yet when we are proud, arrogant, sinful, self-righteous, self-focused, or think God owes us, “WE” have turned away from God. Though He is there we don’t sense Him. Like that couple in the restaurant, so absorbed in what they were doing, we don’t interact with God.

 To turn around and enjoy a relationship with God means we confess sin (look up 1 John 1:9) and repent of our selfish and arrogant way of thinking that God owes us something because of our beliefs and/or good works. The reality is God owes us nothing, yet by His grace and the willful sacrifice of Jesus, we are not only allowed presence with God but are seen as family (read Ephesians 1).

So notice God today. He is right with you. Turn to Him and enjoy His presence.

Mike

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