There are a lot of theological truths that require unwrapping. “God is omnipresent.” Do you know what that means? It means that God is everywhere. Everywhere. Given that truth, do you see God all around you? Do you see God when you pour coffee into your mug, when you watch leaves blowing in the trees, when you hear your children misuse a word?
If you’re like most people, the answer is “probably not,” with the follow up of “what’s the big deal? Isn’t God invisible anyway?” Yes, of course God is invisible. He is a Spirit (John 4:24). But that doesn’t mean you can’t see him at work around you, as long as you adjust your understanding of the word “see.” You can see God all around you in the sense that you can witness his providential, purposeful, beautiful governance of every detail in the world. Everything in the world, in some shape or form, reveals him (Rom. 1:20).
“But,” you say, “I don’t see God in my life this way?” Well, here are three reasons why you might not be seeing God everywhere (which is precisely where he is).
- God is practically irrelevant to you. Don’t get me wrong—you want God to be practically relevant to you, but he just isn’t. You can’t seem to find ways in which God (who seems to be more of a comforting idea than an actual being) concretely influences what you do each day. God, for all intents and purposes, is more of an idea than a three-personed Spirit who knows your name and has a plan for your life.
- You don’t talk to God. This is another way of saying, “You don’t pray.” That’s all prayer is, really. If you don’t talk to another human being, that person can easily become practically irrelevant to you. You lose a sense of concrete engagement. What’s worse, you stop seeing life in relation to that person. Things are separate from him or her and are only related to you. If this is true for human persons, it’s also true for our relationship with the divine persons of the Godhead (Father, Son, and Spirit).
- You don’t hear God talking to you. You might say, “Well, God doesn’t speak to people verbally.” My answer? Of course he does. The Bible is God’s verbal revelation of himself to you, not just to “the church” or to “humanity.” God is always addressing you in Scripture. But if you keep the door closed, the cover shut, you won’t hear him.
If these things apply to you (and they apply to all of us at certain times), you may be suffering from what I call “Communicative Malnourishment” or CM. There’s a simple solution (albeit difficult to implement), and you can read about it HERE.
As you begin recovering from CM, you’ll be able to see God in places you had never seen him before . . . because the statement “God is omnipresent” will be personally meaningful to you. You will be able to see that God is everywhere, because you have seen how God is with you, always addressing you and asking you to address him.
Of course, once you can see God everywhere because of your restored personal relationship with him, you can find God in the ordinary too: in the cup of coffee, the leaves in the trees, a child’s speech. God is right in front of you. Right now. Are you ready to see him at work?
Like what you read? You might enjoy my most recent book, Finding God in the Ordinary. It’s about how we can find God in the everyday moments that we often try to rush past. Here’s a FREE sample chapter.