Where Is Your God?
My tears have been my food day and night, while they continually say to me, Where is thy God? Psalm 42:3
This scripture usually conjures up images in my mind of a bully on a playground, towering over some poor soul when he’s down. He’s aggressive, hostile, jeering.
So, you can imagine my surprise when the devil—the chiefest of all bullies—quietly showed up during one of my prayer times. There I was, right in the middle of pouring out my heart, making my tearful requests known to God, when out of the blue, he pulls up a chair like he intends to make this a three-way conversation.
With the confidence of a seasoned poker player laying his wild card on the table, he casually asks me, “So, where is your God?”
Did he not see God sitting right there at the table with me?
I must admit, I’ve fallen for his card tricks before. I’ve wondered at times why God was MIA. I’ve questioned His heart for me, have even accused Him of treating me harshly a time or two. But those were in the throes of the enemy hammering me.
The devil’s stratagem this time was so subtle, so devious. There was no curl to his upper lip, no sign of aggression. He seemed relaxed, concerned even, as though he were making a casual inquiry about the family. “So, how’s the husband? What’s he up to these days?”
This wasn’t the first time the devil ever played that same card on someone. There was Adam and Eve. “Can it really be that God has said, ‘You shall not eat from any tree of the garden?’” [i] He no doubt furrowed his brow in feigned care and concern while asking.
Whatta card shark.
What it did—his questioning God’s whereabouts in that vulnerable moment of making my tearful entreaties—it threw me off balance. Like the slightest stirring of air to a candle’s flame, my faith, my confidence in God, momentarily fluttered. My God was most assuredly right there with me. He’d been listening to me; He’d seen my tears.
Yet . . . He had been unusually quiet. There’d been no words of comfort, no move toward answering my requests.
I’m not a gambler by any stretch of the word, but I know a winning hand when I’m handed one. And God handed me one right then and there. These tried-and-true certainties on the subject of His whereabouts and activities on our behalf may be just a drop in an ocean-sized bucket, but they were more than enough to call the devil’s bluff.
Where is my God, you ask? I’ll tell you where He is!
He is with us. He’s our very present help in times of need. When we pass through the waters, He is with us, and through the rivers, they shall not overflow us. When we walk through fire, we shall not be burned. He sees our afflictions, hears our cries, and He delivers. His left hand is under our head; His right hand embraces and holds us up. His kindness leads us to repentance, His gentleness makes us great. He who carried us from the womb, guides us, sustains us, comforts us even unto death. He supplies all of our needs according to His riches in glory by Christ Jesus. He oversees the loving and mercies process, the forgiveness process, the sanctification process, the delivering process. When we call to Him, He answers. [ii]
As architect and builder of a city with eternal foundations, God is busy, busy, busy on our behalf. He’s always working to fitly frame and join together His saints into a dwelling place for Himself. Living stones being such as they are, they’re not that easy to work with because we keep moving from where He places us. But this good work He began in us, He will carry it on to completion until the day when Christ Jesus returns. [iii]
Jesus is saving those who call on His name. He abides in us, teaches us, shepherds us, leads us beside still waters, is restoring our souls. He’s preparing a heavenly place for us, is preparing a table before us in the presence of our enemies, anoints our heads with oil, fills our cups to overflowing. He makes intercession for us, is answering requests made in His name, and is transforming and changing us, bringing everything under His control. And He doesn’t stop there; He continues to rein and conquer until all enemies of God are beneath His feet. [iv]
The Holy Spirit is leading and guiding us into all truth, comforting us in all troubles, is washing and renewing us. He’s strengthening us, empowering us, convincing us. He holds back evil, helps us remember what Jesus told us. [v]
So, where is our God? He’s right here with us, within us, all around us. You can’t get any closer than that.
[i] Genesis 3:1 [ii] Matthew 1:23; Psalm 46:1; Isaiah 43:2; Exodus 3:7–8; Song 2:6; Romans 2:4; Psalm 18:35—36; Isaiah 46:4; Psalm 48:14; 2 Corinthians 1:3; Philippians 4:19; Lamentations 3:22–23; Matthew 6:14–15; 1 Thessalonians 5:23; 2 Corinthians 1:10; Isaiah 65:24; Philippians 1:6 [iii] Hebrews 11:10; John 5:17; Ephesians 2:19–22; [iv] Acts 2:21; John 15:4–9; Colossians 1:27; John 14:3; Psalm 23; Hebrews 7:25; John 14:13; Philippians 3:21; 1 Corinthians 15:25 [v] John 16:13; 2 Corinthians 1: 3–4; John 14:26; Titus 3:5; Ephesians 3:16; Acts 1:8; John 16:8–11; 2 Thessalonians 2:7; John 14:26