Home > Believe > Distance – Getting Some Distance – 4/26/20

We were born with an inquisitive nature. One of the first questions a child asks is, “why?”. Then with the answer comes yet another “why” and another until, as a parent, we say, “Because I said so, that’s why!” We all have “why” questions, and one of those includes, “Why doesn’t God make it easier for us?”. When we face a crisis, He could shoot us a text, explain the purpose of what we are going through, tell us why. Yet many times we are left uninformed. Consider the times you have sought God faithfully, fervently, sought His will, His comfort or guidance. My guess is it was during a time of crisis, a time of doubt. When life is easy, everything makes sense and we are comfortable. We tend to forget God. But difficulties bring doubt and doubts drive us to close the distance between us a God—to draw close. We spend more time with God, read his word, pray more when we are in a struggle. Doubt also causes us to deal with difficult questions, the deep questions. Will we trust God in times of trouble? Doubt deepens our faith. When we wrestle with our doubts and seek God, our confidence in God is strengthened, our faith grows. Doubts are natural, they are human and they compel us one way or another…either to do our own thing and maybe even abandon God, or to close the distance and seek Him more.

Scripture – Ps 77:1-9, 11-13, 15; Ro 15:4; Is 40:25-26; Je 29:11; Jn 6:68-69

I pray to you, Lord God, and I beg you to listen. In days filled with trouble, I search for you. All night long I lift my hands in prayer, but I cannot find comfort. (Ps 77:1-2) “Will the Lord always reject us? Will he never again be pleased with us? Has he stopped loving us? Does his promise no longer stand? Has God forgotten to be merciful? Has anger taken the place of compassion?” (Ps 77:7-9) I will remember your great deeds, Lord; I will recall the wonders you did in the past. I will think about all that you have done; I will meditate on all Your mighty acts. (Ps 77:11-12) “To whom will you compare me? Or who is my equal?” says the Holy One. (Is 40:25)

In the 77th Psalm, Asaph records his struggle with doubt, his questions about God’s purpose and plan at a time when he feels alone and abandoned. His thought process leads him back toward God by first remembering the Lord’s great deeds. He spent time thinking about all that God had done for him in the past and for others, as well. His faith was refreshed as he meditated on God’s amazing track record. God’s power is evident in all that he has done. In Isaiah 40, God asks, “Whom will you compare to me?” Can you compare anyone or any god to our God who created the heavens with all the stars and vast universe. Our Earth is positioned at exactly the perfect distance from the sun for sustaining life and all that we enjoy. It turns every 24 hours giving us day and night and God’s promise of a new day. God’s power is mind-blowing! Asaph also reflects on God’s character in Ps 77:13. “Your ways, God, are holy.” We know that God commits no evil; He never seeks to harm; He desires the best for us. He extends grace when we doubt, stumble and fall; He picks us up. Even when we can’t see God’s hand, we can trust his heart! When we recall and reflect on who God is and all that He has done, our hope is renewed. Our hope is not wishful thinking or blind optimism, it is hope in
the One who is able to sustain the universe and carry us through whatever we may be facing.

Is there a doubt about your faith that plagues you? When have you gone through a season of doubt? How did you deal with it? Where did you find help? How did you emerge from it? What advice would you give someone who has great doubts about God, faith, Christianity? How do you deal with the “why” questions that arise when you deal with crisis?

Journal about some of the times in your life when God showed up, when you felt His presence and when you knew that He was with you. Reflect on God’s faithfulness in past times, when you are dealing with doubt.

Holy God and Creator of all things, I am humbled by Your love and care. I am a dot in this amazing world and yet You pay attention to my life and to my needs. You desire a relationship with “me”! I am privileged to be Your child. Thank you for all you have done, that you are always faithful and true. Help me to rest in your hands! In Jesus Name I pray, amen.