“You are as close to God as you choose to be” — Rick Warren
“If God seems far away, guess who moved” — Robin Jones Gunn
“Do you not know that you are God’s temple and that God’s Spirit dwells in you?” — 1 Corinthians 3:16
There’s been one too many times I’ve felt my prayer isn’t worth saying. As if God isn’t listening to my jumbled thoughts and as if He’s tired of my frequent requests. As if He doesn’t want to hear me say “thank you” and “forgive me” yet again. As if He’s pulling away from me because I so often don’t hold up my end of things.
I notice this feeling more frequently when I’ve felt my actions haven’t been enough. When I can’t deny a sinful thought or move. That’s when I need Him most but feel too guilty to confront Him.
It’s funny how often we try to comprehend God’s actions as we would a human’s.
He doesn’t grow tired of us. We don’t owe Him. He’s not a bank at which we will eventually run out of resources. Our human minds can’t fathom His tremendous promise because we try to compare Him to our human relationships.
God is IN us. He has already promised to stay there as long as we’ll have Him. What’s more, He’s told us time and again we were forgiven long ago and we’re washed clean.
So why would we waste a moment feeling too guilty to be with Him? Why would we limit ourselves and waste such a comfort?
I listened to a sermon by Andrew Farley (find it here under “Hotspots Part 1”) where he broke down what it means to have Christ in us. The main point he came to addressed how liberating that is. It means rather than believing you’re too full of sin to improve and to spend your life constantly drowning in guilt, you rest assured knowing Christ is with you. And in doing so, you have time and energy to devote to praying for people and loving people and doing Christ’s work. You aren’t so focused on the self, because God is taking care of that part as long as you’ll have Him. Rather, you are focused on actually being His hands and feet in this world.
The balance between recognizing your sins and feeling uplifted by Christ is one with which I struggle. But letting the peace rush over me as I envision Christ within me—and not far away looking down with disdain—alleviates my worries quite a bit.