Where can I go from your spirit? Where can I flee from your presence?
I am not sure that there is a place in the Bible that I find more internal turmoil than the words of much of Psalms 139. I have over half of the chapter highlighted in my Bible, namely the ones that speak of God’s everlasting presence.
One might think it to be odd that a Christian would struggle with the idea of God’s presence, but having gone through some of the things I have, sometimes I have wanted very much to flee from his omnipresence.
My sister is ten years younger than me so I was always out of whatever phase she was going through, but the one that has always stuck out to me the most was the foot stomping, door slamming years. (Sorry to expose you, kid!) I used to grade her efforts and offer her the “loving” advice that next time if she just stomped a little more and slammed the door a little harder, surely Mom and Dad would give her what she wanted. (Funny after all these years she has never come back to thank me for that sisterly advice!)
And, then, I entered the world of infertility.
Prayer after prayer after prayer went without the response I was hoping for. After some time of this, I wanted nothing more than to flee from God, stomp my own feet and slam the door in his face. If he wasn’t going to give me what I wanted, then I wanted to run from his presence. I could not understand how the idea of him never leaving was supposed to bring comfort when I wanted nothing more than to escape. If he wasn’t going to give me my way, I did not want him around.
Yeah, apparently, full-grown adults can have their own version of temper tantrums. It’s not something I am especially proud of, but it is the reality of where I was.
But, then I hit those points where the utter isolation and loneliness of infertility threatened to cave in on me; those times where my life felt like a wasteland; the moments where it felt like a nuclear bomb went off and I could no longer recognize my own life. Do you know who I craved more than anything else? God. The comfort of the one I was trying to escape from would be the very thing I desired. Suddenly, the knowledge of him always being along my side was soothing.
As a parent, now, I understand on a small scale of God’s angle in looking upon us as his children. Time and time again, I have to stick to what I know is right while my children wail and rally against me because they are not getting their way. I know something they cannot see and have to hold on through the tantrums and wait for them to come around and realize what I was trying to say. As much as they push against me at times, I am also the very person they run to for comfort when they are hurt or scared. They know I am always there for them even when they do not want me to be.
That is what God was and is doing with me. He can see his final plan for my life. He cannot always answer my prayers the way I demand because he has a greater purpose for my life that I cannot yet see. He waits patiently while I work through my anger with him. He has never let go. He is right beside me to pick me up when devastation hits.
He is always with us, regardless of our emotions about it. We can push and run, but he just follows right behind us, waiting to pick us up when we need him to.
Like it or not we can never flee from his presence. He is in the heavens and depths, on the wings of the dawn and the far side of the sea. Even the darkness will not hide us from him.
Omnipresent forever and always.
As always, if you have questions, comments or ideas, please e-mail me at TheRefreshingWell@gmail.com.