I have 4 neighbors. I’ll call them number 1, 2 3 and 4.
I speak to 1 a lot. We often have long conversations about any and everything.
I speak to 2 less than 1 but whenever they come or go, I always say “hello” or “have a great day”.
Number 3, I don’t speak to very often at all. Once or twice a year we will have a conversation or if something happens in our neighborhood, we will certainly talk then.
Then there is number 4. I never speak to him. There are no hard feelings, I just never really connected with him.
So I feel closer to number 1 than the rest even though they all live exactly one house away.
How can number 4 who is so close feel so far away? It is simple: distance is not just the amount of length it is also the amount of relationship. We feel closer to those who we know the best, spend the most time with. We feel distant to those we never talk to, listen to, care for or even acknowledge.
A side effect of my lack of relationship with number 4 is that my perception of him is entirely based on my assumptions and not the facts. I assume he is quite, I assume he doesn't really like me. In fairness to him, I should get to know him. It is not fair for me to place assumptions on him that may or may not be true.
You have probably figure out by now that I am talking about us and our relationship to God. Some people feel really close to Him while others feel miles apart. In reality, He is right there. He is right where he has always been and will alway be. The more time we spend together the more I understand Him, the more I hear from Him and the more I trust Him. When there is distance, it is because I have walked away, not Him.
So I ask: Is God more like number 1, 2, 3 or 4 to you?
The fact that number 4 and I never speak does not change the physical distance at all and it does not change the fact that number for is real. At any time I can walk over and start the relationship.
Here is my simple challenge: start tomorrow and give God just 2 more minutes more each day than you do now. That’s 120 seconds! If you spend 10 minutes now, make it 12 minutes. If you spend no time with Him, then 2 minutes will be easy. I promise He will seem closer and closer to you.
Give him one minute of prayer- thank him for whatever is good in your life, ask Him for help with the stuff thats bad and give Him one minute reading His word- read Luke then James in the Bible. Its kinda like one minute of Him listening to you and one of you listening to Him.
Once that is habit for you, feel free to add another minute.