DayBreaks for 10/07/19: From a Distance
From the DayBreaks archive, September 2009:
I don’t know who wrote the song titled, From A Distance, but I know that both Bette Middler and Kathy Mattea have recorded it. The words are very poignant, and were probably inspired by some of the beautiful pictures of earth that were taken from space. Essentially, the song describes how from a distance all on the earth looks to be peaceful and serene. From space, you can’t see people hurting each other, killing each other and cheating one another. The song goes on to describe how God sees all this going on from a distance.
I like the song, actually. But I must disagree with the concept that God views us from a distance. The ancient Jews conceived of God as very high and exalted (and rightfully so), but to the extent that they believed that man could never approach God. Well, I guess that up to a point in time, they were right about that, too. Man couldn’t approach God until He first approached us! But with Jesus, all that changed. God was no longer viewing us from a distance, but from behind human eyes. What a different perspective for Him that must have been!
We might be tempted to think that with the ascension, God left the earth and hasn’t been close since. Nothing could be further from the truth. If the NT is clear about anything, it is that God takes up residence in us when we give our lives to Him: And in him you too are being built together to become a dwelling in which God lives by His Spirit. (Eph. 2:22) God doesn’t watch you from a distance. In fact, He’s closer to you than your very own skin, because He is inside of your skin!!!
Does it bother you that God sees you from that close instead of far away? It really shouldn’t make any difference. If He truly is God (and He is!) He can see equally well from far away. But it is to our benefit that He lives within us. It is the indwelling Spirit that testifies to us that we are His children (Romans 8:16), that seals us for redemption and guarantees us of our heavenly inheritance (Eph. 1:13b-14).
When we lose contact with the God who dwells within us, we lose much of our ability to resist sin. As you make your way through this day, practice the presence of the God that lives within you. Listen for Him, talk to Him and enjoy Him! He enjoys you – just as you are, up close and personal!
PRAYER: May we find complete and utter rest in knowing that You know us and we are not strangers to You! In Jesus’ name, Amen.
Copyright by 2019 by Galen C. Dalrymple. ><}}}”>