4 Distractions That Might Cause God To Feel Distant In Your Life
Living in Sin
There is a sense of uneasiness when a Christian begins to live in sin and fails to repent of it. Isaiah wrote, “When you spread out your hands, I will hide my eyes from you; even though you make many prayers, I will not listen; your hands are full of blood” (Isaiah 1:15). “We know that God does not listen to sinners, but if anyone is a worshiper of God and does his will, God listens to him” (John 9:31). The fact is, when we are living in sin, we have lost our fellowship with God, even though our relationship with Him remains. It is just as if a child disobeyed their parent; they would lose their parent’s favor but never their love.
This is close to living in sin and feeling distant from God. But when we sin, we are to confess it to God and keep short accounts with Him. The psalmist tells us, “If I had cherished iniquity in my heart, the Lord would not have listened” (Psalm 66:18) because we are living in disobedience to God. Imagine again your child had not been honest with you, confessed they did something they weren’t supposed to do, and then came up to ask you for something. Wouldn’t you be hesitant to give the child a blessing when they were not even being honest enough to admit they did something wrong?
Trials and Tribulations
The Apostle Peter wrote, “Do not be surprised at the fiery trial when it comes upon you to test you, as though something strange were happening to you. But rejoice insofar as you share Christ’s sufferings, that you may also rejoice and be glad when his glory is revealed” (1 Peter 4:12-13). The Apostle Paul looked at all circumstances that came to him and wrote, “I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worth comparing with the glory that is to be revealed to us” (Romans 8:18) but also wrote that “we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose” (Romans 8:28).
In Your Own Strength
We are told time and again that we cannot do anything without Christ’s strength (Philippians 4:13). Jesus Himself said, “I am the vine; you are the branches. Whoever abides in me and I in him, he it is that bears much fruit, for apart from me you can do nothing” (John 15:6). Nothing doesn’t mean a little something. We can’t do anything of consequence apart from God; when we try, we fail, which makes us feel distant from God.
The Scriptures show us how to get near to God, and He will draw near to us so that we won’t feel so distant from Him. Scripture tells us that “the LORD is near to the brokenhearted and saves the crushed in spirit” (Psalm 34:18) and that He only gives His grace to those who are humble (James 4:6). Pride makes God distant from us, so pride can also be a distraction that makes us feel distant from God. Let us remember that “the sacrifices of God are a broken spirit; a broken and contrite heart, O God, you will not despise” (Psalm 51:17).
May God richly bless you,
Pastor Jack Wellman
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