Have you ever grown closer to a person over time and it had nothing to do with proximity? For example, a father will say, “Over this past year, I’ve really grown closer to my son”, while being separated by great distance. Or maybe you’ve heard the opposite, “Over the past year we’ve really grown apart…”, even though spatially they were very near.
Emotional distance, feeling closer or farther from a person emotionally, having nothing to do with where you’re each located geographically, is a very real thing. I’m sure you’ve experienced it on occasion…I know I have.
In the same way we can feel far from people, at times we can also feel far from God. There could be moments when you feel especially close to God, like you have His ear and He is an active participant in whatever you have going on around you. There are also times when it is possible to feel especially distant from God, where you feel that something has been lost and your relationship with Him doesn’t seem fresh. I believe there are reasons for feeling that distance from God and that there are ways in which we can start to feel close again.
We need to increase our spiritual awareness of God’s presence. The reality is that God is always near us but we are not always aware of Him. In Genesis 28 we see Jacob had this same struggle. He falls asleep and starts to dream of a ladder with steps that lead up to heaven. In verse 16 it reads, “Then Jacob awoke from his sleep and said, “Surely the Lord is in this place, and I did not know it.” God was there and present the whole time but Jacob didn’t realize it. His problem was our problem.
As hard as it can be at times, it IS possible for us to live with a consciousness of God’s presence even through the mundane, everyday grind of life. Hebrews 13:5 says, “I will never leave you nor forsake you.” This is a promise from the Old Testament that God gave to Joshua and to Moses. Jesus also promises it to all of us in Mathew 28:20: “And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age.”
How do we become more spiritually aware of God’s presence? I think the best way is to obey Him and His commands. In John 14:21 Jesus states, “Those who accept my commandments and obey them are the ones who love me. And because they love me, my Father will love them. And I will love them and reveal myself to each of them.” Jesus is promising that if we follow His commands, He will make himself known to us. Your spiritual awareness will increase through obedience to Him.
We as believes have a deep desire to feel connected with God and have intimacy with Him. If you want a closer walk with God, to feel Him and sense Him with you, begin with obedience.