"I Can't Feel God"
Have you ever found yourself saying things like "I feel distant from God" or "I can't feel God" or "God doesn't care about me"? We often say these things and blame God for not showing up in our lives when we need Him. But the truth is, God’s love and presence is always there and available. We actually make the decision to live apart from it.
The enemy is constantly trying to destroy our relationship with God by leading us into disobedience and tricking us to value earthly happiness above our relationship with Jesus. Because of Jesus’s death and resurrection, there is grace for us when we mess up. But that doesn’t mean there aren’t still consequences when we disobey God. When we choose to live in sin, we are choosing to ruin our own bodies and minds. And soon we find ourselves feeling far from God or feeling like His love and presence isn’t with us. This could be during a season of complacency, where we rather give our time to our earthly relationships and earthly desires than to God. It could also be a result of the habitual sins in our life that we keep to ourselves instead of confessing it to others. It could be a desire to control everything around us and an unwillingness to trust in God’s will for our life because of fear and doubt. Each time we choose to sin, we are removing ourselves from an awareness of God’s presence.
Obedience to God shouldn’t be a legalistic obligation where we do it to avoid punishment or to gain rewards. Rather, the act of obedience is itself a way of knowing God, an attempt to learn, understand, and emulate God’s mind and will. To obey is to also love God and vice versa to love God is to obey.
"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 the and
reveal myself to each of them." -John 14:21
Jesus’s relationship with God the Father was characterized by love and obedience. In Matthew 4, Jesus withstood every temptation from the devil. He also demonstrated on the cross, despite the unimaginable pain, the joy He was able to receive from God came through obedience. "Yet not my will, but Yours be done.” -Luke 22:42
It’s okay to admit we do not have the intimacy we want, but we also shouldn’t be content with where we are at. Even if we struggle to get there, our act of obedience is the doorway to intimacy, in which God will honor. Scripture is clear that if we live in obedience to God, we will enter into a place of intimacy that will provide more joy, peace, and love beyond what the world could ever give us!
"As the Father has loved me, so have I loved you.
Abide in my love. If you keep my commandments, you
will abide in my love, just as I have kept my Father's
commandments and abide in his love. These things I
have spoken to you, that my joy maybe in you, and
that your joy may be full." -John 15:9-11
Reflect & Apply
Pause and ask the Lord to reveal the state of your heart to you. Spend a few minutes and confess to the Lord, aloud or in your journal.
How are you willfully separating yourself from the presence of God?
Ask God to convict you when you are being tempted to sin, and ask Him to help you live in obedience and grow in intimacy by the power of His Holy Spirit.