I believe there are several reasons for this. I suspect I can blame jet lag for some of it. Return culture shock for some of it. Getting used to some processed American food for some of it. But I believe the main culprit is Satan has been telling me lies and then, I in turn, believe them.
You see, I thought things like, “You were so busy doing God’s work, take a break.” “You’ve missed so much while you were away; take the time to get caught up.” “You really don’t have anything to do, just relax.”
And I did.
But here’s the thing. By listening to these lies, I not only did all these things, but I even cut back on my Bible study time. I cut back on my prayer time. I cut back on my personal time with God and guess what? I began to feel disconnected from God.
But guess who moved? It wasn’t God! It was me!
After a good dose of Bible study with some wonderful ladies, I realized what I had done. I had allowed Satan to pull me in. I cannot believe I was willing to put aside my spiritual well-being and growth for comfort. But I did.
So today begins anew…remember my favorite verse? “Because of the Lord’s great love we are not consumed, for his compassions never fail. They are new every morning; great is your faithfulness.” (Lamentations 3:22-23 – NIV)
Oh, how wonderful to know that God’s faithfulness is greater than I could ever imagine. To know that He is willing for me to start over each morning, just as if nothing had happened yesterday. But I know that I have to do my part. My faithfulness to Him must continually grow. I may never be as faithful as my God, but I can certainly try harder each day to be more faithful than the day before.
My personal time with God and the Lord Jesus Christ must come before anything else. Yes, including my sleep if need be.
So what is my plan? James 4:8 (NIV) tells us, “Come near to God and he will come near to you. Wash your hands, you sinners, and purify your hearts, you double-minded.”
I must draw near to God (prayer and Bible study). Wash my hands (confess my sin). Purify my heart (become God-centered). These are literal steps I must take to be in God’s presence.
Psalm 51:10 (NIV) says, “Create in me a pure heart, O God, and renew a steadfast spirit within me.” The next step is to ask God to do His work within me. Allowing God’s Spirit to continue the purifying process and to keep me on the correct path will take me then, to the next step.
Being with God. In Psalm 91:1-2 (NIV), David shares these words. “He who dwells in the shelter of the Most High will rest in the shadow of the Almighty. I will say of the Lord, ‘He is my refuge and my fortress, my God, in whom I trust.’”
When I dwell in God’s presence, I find rest. I find protection. I find strength. And then I am ready to begin a new day being closer to God.
Perhaps you are feeling distant from God today. If so, why not try these simple steps to begin the process of an intimate relationship with the King of Kings? Nothing is worth being separated from God. Nothing.
So, don’t listen to that old devil. He’ll try every trick in the book to get you walk away from God. But you just turn to God and say, “You are my King forever! I will trust in You. Let’s take a little walk together. I love You!”
Grace and peace be yours in abundance,