Distraction of Distance

Where can I go from your Spirit? Where can I flee from your presence? Psalm 139:7

When I was a young bride, we moved from Michigan to Maryland to begin our new life together. My husband’s family was in California, mine was in Michigan, so we were truly by ourselves in this unfamiliar place. We loved this exciting stage of life and the adventures of our surroundings. But I must admit, the distance from our loved ones was difficult.

Because I experienced this separation from family as I raised my own, I did not want to repeat it with the next generation. So, when my adult children ended up in the same geographical area, my husband and I made the difficult decision to relocate closer to them. It separated us from many friends and took us further from extended family.

Now when I pray for my family members and friends who I do not see regularly, I’m grateful for the connection of prayer.  I have the confidence they are held in the loving care of a Lord who loves them. It even occurred to me, that though we feel physical separation, there is no spiritual separation between us. Isn’t this like our relationship with God? We are never separated from the presence of God. He is omnipresent, always with us, today, tomorrow, and nothing can separate us from His spirit.

Despite knowing this intellectually, emotionally there are still times that I feel separated from God. But I am not alone in this. Even David reflected on times of feeling distanced from God. In Psalm 10:1, he writes “Why, O Lord, do you stand far off? Why do you hide Yourself in time of trouble?”

Romans 8:38-39: reminds me- For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.

What a promise! We are never separated from God! Robin Jones Gunn wrote, “If you feel far from God, guess who moved?” Yes, there will be times we feel distance from God just like we feel a physical distance from our own loved ones. How do we reconnect with those loved ones that are far away? Through increasing communication: letters, calls, pictures, and social media. How do we reconnect with God when we feel distanced from Him? Through increasing communication: prayer, worship, reading scriptures, and even singing songs that remind us of His promises.

Dear God,

Thank you that there is not anywhere that I can go to get away from Your Spirit. What if I go to the depths? You are there even when I do not feel Your presence. Help me to muster the energy to pray, read and reach out to You when I feel so far away. I know it is not You that moved, and I am so grateful for Your steadfast love for me when I experience this. Amen

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