A better question than “Where is God?”
You’ve asked the question. I have asked the question. At some point in their lives, even the past and present saints among us have stopped to ask, “Where is God?”
When our world is suddenly rattled with upset, troubling news or heartbreak, the question rises. Here are three other questions that stem from this one question: How could God let this happen? Is God present to us? Does God care?
I have a better question we can ask when so much hurt happens. This question, when asked, changes the focus from God to ourselves, and I’ll explain why this is necessary in a moment.
But first, the question that is better than “Where is God?” is “God, why am I having trouble trusting you now?”
Think with me for a minute. Far more dangerous than a distant God is a God we don’t trust.
Now go further. The fact that we don’t trust God puts the responsibility of the relationship on us, not on God.
The question, “Where is God?” can keep God away—and this is by our design, whether we admit to it or not. It is easier for us to keep God far away by wondering where God is.
Keeping the focus on God naturally keeps the focus away from where it should go, which is on us. In other words, it is easier for us to wonder where God is than to work on the trust issues we have with God.
Catch my point. You have heard (or have asked yourself),“Where is God?” When is the last time you admitted you are having trust issues with God?
If you say, “I trust God” but still hold problems, you aren’t trusting God. Likewise, if you say, “I don’t have time for God,” then you are saying, in essence, that you are your own god, and, if your life is messy right now, then you should admit you’re not very good at being your own god.
No one is good at being their own god.
Rather than wondering where God is, we should wonder why—and where—we keep failing to trust God. Scripture helps. Our Bible is filled life stories of multi-dimensional people who, like all of us at times, do not trust God. Learn from them. How? Be present to them by reading about them not once but over and over.
If you say you don’t have time for God, reading, or Sabbath, you are really saying you don’t trust God enough to give Him your time.
In closing this column this week, let me return to scripture. In Revelation 21:3, we read, “God is with His people.”
We don’t wonder where God is. Find Him with His people.
And His people—His church people—will help you with your trust stories as they share with you their own because as argumentative, messy, distracted, ignorant and egotistical as we can be, together we experience what is true: God IS with us.
This blog first appeared in The Susquehanna Independent on April 3, 2019.