Does God seem far away? Does he take a long time to answer?

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    If God feels far away, who moved?  God is all around you.  Like Wonder Dog, God is Everywhere.

    If God takes a long time to answer, read Lesson 64: God’s Delays (Acts 24:24-27). It starts:

    A man, toolbox in hand, rang the doorbell. “Good morning, ma’am, I’m the plumber. I’ve come to fix the pipe.”

    “But I didn’t call a plumber.”

    “You didn’t? Aren’t you Mrs. Foster?”

    “No, she moved away a year ago.”

    “How do you like that? They call for a plumber, claiming it’s an emergency, and then they move away!”

    Sometimes it seems as if God responds to our emergencies like that plumber responded to that call. We’re in a crisis and we cry out, “Help, God!” Silence. “God, I need You right now!” No answer. “God? Are You there?” Nothing.

    If you have been a Christian for very long, you have experienced God’s delays. David experienced them. He wrote, “I am weary with my crying; my throat is parched; my eyes fail while I wait for my God” (Ps. 69:3). Again he wrote, “My soul waits in silence for God only; from Him is my salvation” (Ps. 62:1).

    Waiting is especially difficult in light of the shortness of life. The older you get, the quicker life seems to fly by. I’ll be 55 in three weeks, and it’s amazing to me to think that all our children are grown now. I wonder how all of those years went by so quickly. Some wag observed that life is like a roll of toilet paper: the closer you get to the end, the quicker it goes!

    Because life is so short, it’s difficult when the Lord makes you wait. Paul must have struggled as he remained in custody in Caesarea. The notice we get seems almost like an insignificant passing comment: “But after two years had passed, Felix was succeeded by Porcius Festus; and wishing to do the Jews a favor, Felix left Paul imprisoned.” You can read that comment in a few seconds, but it represents two long years of Paul’s life, and he wasn’t getting any younger. You’ll look in vain for any mention of God in the verse. It sounds so capricious. To gain some political capital, a selfish politician leaves God’s number one apostle to the Gentiles in prison. The preaching of the gospel among the Gentiles will have to wait. As Paul waited and prayed and prayed and waited, he must have wondered, “Why doesn’t God get me out of here?”

    There are many lessons that we can learn from our times of waiting for God’s delays, but I would like to focus on two:

    God uses His delays to teach us to trust Him more fully and to submit more thoroughly to His lordship over our lives.

    Read the rest at  and then be ready to discuss it at a future HOT TOPIC Discussion to be announced the night I choose.

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