This morning as I was reading God’s Word and praying, I asked that God would be present in my day. How foolish a prayer to be taken literally, for God is omnipresent. He is everywhere.
No, he’s not everything, that’s pantheism, but He is always present.
No, my prayer that God would be present is really a request that I would recognize His being there in my day, not just in the quiet time. With love and respect to some of my more charismatic and more “excitable” brothers and sisters (and even a few United Brethren), God’s presence isn’t limited to dramatic services and hands raised during singing.
God is not limited to being “there” when it’s a “great time in the presence of the Lord”. If this pandemic teaches us anything, oh may it clarify and refocus our theology. Our heavenly Father is at all times present. We simply need to recognize it.
God is in the quiet moments of the morning with your Bible and your cup.
God is in the moments by the fireplace listening to the crackle and pop.
But God is also in the Emergency Room.
He walks the halls of the ICU.
God is there with you in your commute to work and home.
God is with you as you rush to meet another deadline.
God is there when the sirens go off and the volunteers rush to their engines.
God is there with the hospice patient.
God is there at the sewing machine.
God is there as the COVID patient struggles for breath.
God is there as you wash the dishes and take out the trash.
God is there as you disobey him, thinking you’re hiding your sin from Him face.
God is there when you repent for losing your temper or walking away from Him.
God is there as you try for the 1,000th time to tighten that stubborn bolt.
God is there when you are frustrated with your kids, spouse, dog, and/or garbage disposal.
God is there.
See, that is what I love most about the title “Immanuel” given to Jesus. Because Jesus, God the Son, came near, I don’t ever have to doubt the presence of God again. And even though He is already everywhere, for the believer and follower of Christ, there is the indwelling presence of God the Holy Spirit.
And yes, while we must not forsake meeting together, as is the habit of some, I am so thankful that I don’t have to go to a building or a service or a location or even a room in your home. You don’t even have to ask… Because God is there.
Now, do you see Him? No. Do you always feel Him? No. It wouldn’t be faith if you could always feel God. But if we seek Him with our whole heart, we will find Him today. And we’ll discover that He’s been there the whole time. Just as sometimes our eyes don’t focus quick enough to recognize someone passing by, so often we fail to recognize that Immanuel has never left us.