Tuesday, January 3, 2012

God is Always with Us

Welcome! This week we’re in Chapter One of Micca Campbell’s An Untroubled Heart.

“No matter what our emotions or circumstances may say, the truth is there is nowhere we can go to escape God’s presence. Though it might not feel like it or look like it, God is always near.” (Micca Campbell, An Untroubled Heart)

Can you relate to this? I certainly can! There are times I can’t feel God’s presence. I know He’s near me, but I feel like I can’t get to Him.

I recently wrote about knowing God is with me even when I can’t feel it. It fits this chapter and what’s on my mind so well, I’m going to repost it. If you have read it before, I ask your forgiveness for reposting. (I don’t make it a habit.) However, because I often benefit from rereading my own posts, I’d like to ask you to also reread it.


I Know He’s With Me
by Laura Rath

Sometimes I can’t feel God’s presence…but I know He’s there.

Usually it’s when I’ve hit a feeling of despair…a situation isn’t going well…I’m tired, stressed, or angry…life isn’t going the way I hoped or wanted…and I can’t feel His presence.

But I know He’s there. And sometimes knowing instead of feeling has to be enough.

Those moments of despair are times I can either grow closer and more dependent on God, or turn away from Him. The enemy would love to watch us turn away. He wants us to question God’s love for us, and the enemy knows that in our times of desperation, we are most vulnerable. We are wounded and susceptible to his lies.

That is when I have to rely on what I know, and not on what I feel. I may feel alone, but I know God is with me. When I cry out to Him, I may not hear an answer, but I know He is there.

God’s Word says…
“This is my command—be strong and courageous! Do not be afraid or discouraged. For the Lord your God is with you wherever you go. He will neither fail you nor abandon you.” (Joshua 1:9, Deuteronomy 31:6, 8 NLT)

When I get to those times of crying out, “Where are you, God?!?” I know He’s there, but I long to see and feel Him. Sometimes He answers right away, through a feeling, a Scripture verse, or something that calms me down. But other times, I have to wait…patiently.

Because I know God is there and hasn’t left me, I continue to pray and talk to Him. I must keep myself in God’s Word, trusting in His promises. And I look back at times God showed Himself to me—in His time and His way.

The waiting is not easy, but knowing He’s there helps me wait until I feel it again. The moments of desperation are often when my faith and trust in God can grow the most.

However, I can’t wait only for the times of despair to turn to Him. I must be in His Word at all times or I won’t be prepared for the tough times.

Every school practices fire drills. Why? So that if there ever is a fire, the children know what to do. In an emergency, panic can immobilize us, especially if we are not prepared and don’t know where to go.

When I get to a low point and I can’t feel God’s presence, panic can be immobilizing. It helps greatly if I already know where to go—God’s Word. I start with Scripture verses that are my favorites or have brought me comfort in the past. Then I’ll often let myself continue to read wherever I am in the Bible, and that’s how I find new verses that help me wait on God and bring me peace. I believe He guides us to those verses, knowing what we need to hear from His Word.

There are other things we can do to keep us turned toward God when we are waiting to feel His presence:
- Know that He is there!
- Continue to pray.
- Stay in God’s Word.
- Write out favorite Scripture verses to keep with you at all times.
- Remember other times when you have seen God’s work in your life, remembering that He knows what’s best for us.
- Listen to Christian music.
- Talk with friends or other people who are like-minded in Christ.
- Get enough rest. (Being overtired is sure to affect my thoughts and feelings when things are already not going well.)

Do you have others to add to this list? Please share by leaving a comment.

In Christ,
Laura

11 comments:

  1. This is great Laura. I look forward to studying Micca's book with you.

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  2. Thanks Zoe! So glad to have you studying with us!

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  3. It truly helps me to know that the felllings i have I am not alone that others share the same worries and fears thank you for listning to God and having this online bible study. I think i'm gonna enjoy it very much!

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  4. Thank you for reposting this. I do not often feel the overwhelming weight of His presence. I always though it was because I am not good enough. But I believe God is just teaching me to walk by faith, to know that He's right beside me.

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  5. Thanks for your comment Jessica! I agree, it helps me too to know I'm not the only one with particular feelings and concerns. I think we can really help each other by being honest about such things!


    Hi Barbie, thanks for visiting! I've been learning that God answers and works in His time, not mine. His timing is always perfect, and it is teaching me patience!

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  6. Thanks for this practical, encouraging post! Great tips for staying focused on God. Blessings!

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  7. Laura:

    I'm glad you reposted this because I enjoyed reading it. (Interesting that we both wrote about waiting.)

    I liked the analogy you used about fire drills. If we don't turn to God and study His word before a crises hits, we won't know how to react during one.

    Blessings and thanks for linking up!

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  8. Thanks for posting this. I am so thankful to have found this study and am excited to get more in dept.

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  9. Hi Heather, thanks for your comment! I'm ready to dig into this study too!

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  10. Thank you for this post... I am at one of those times of despair currently in my life and I KNOW that God is here with me, but I am having a hard time feeling his presence in my life. I also thank you for having this bible study online and I look forward to it!

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  11. Hi Angie, I'm so glad you KNOW He's with you--cling to that until you feel His presence again. Look for small ways in which He may show Himself to you. Sometimes I have to quiet myself and ask Him to show Himself to me. He never disappoints!

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Thank you for sharing your thoughts!