Are you feeling isolated?

But now in Christ Jesus you who once were far away have been brought near by the blood of Christ.
Ephesians 2:13 (NIV)

Read: Ephesians 2:11-22

Consider:  There are some Christians who go through life feeling that God is far away and unreachable.  For others the feeling might be occasional, perhaps brought on by some life crisis.  If you have ever felt like that, be encouraged that this is not as uncommon as you think.  Reading through the Psalms it is clear the the psalmists expressed this kind of feeling to God.  We read: I say to God my Rock, ‘Why have you forgotten me?‘ (Psalm 42:9a) and similarly in Psalm 43:2a – You are God my stronghold.  Why have you rejected me?

Jesus also felt this isolation from God when on the cross, but an isolation created by him taking on himself the sins of the world.  In Mark’s gospel it says: And at three in the afternoon Jesus cried out in a loud voice, ‘Eloi, Eloi, lama sabachthani?’ (Which means ‘My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?’) (Mark 15:34).  Here Jesus was quoting from Psalm 22:1.

Understanding that sin can create a barrier between us and God, we should question why we feel as we do.  The psalmist expresses this when he says: If I regard iniquity in my heart, the Lord will not hear (Psalm 66:1 NKJV).  When going through a time of doubt, or feelings of isolation from God, it is important to examine ourselves honestly, asking God to bring to light anything that might hinder our relationship with him.  Having faced up to it, we should repent and seek God’s forgiveness.

Let me ask you a question – Do you think that feelings are dependable?  Everyone should recognise that their feelings are easily affected by what is going on around them.  We can be adversely affected by personal circumstances and relationships.  Stress is another major factor influencing how we feel at any given moment.  If we agree that feelings are not dependable, what should we be basing our confidence upon?

The writer of Hebrews says this: Now faith is confidence in what we hope for and assurance about what we do not see (Hebrews 11:1).  Confidence in what?  Our confidence should not be based on how we feel, but on who God is and what he has done for us as revealed in the Bible.    The world may speak of ‘blind faith’, but the Bible teaches that faith is open-eyed, totally realistic and based on the reality of God the Father, Son and Holy Spirit.

When you feel isolated from God go back to the Bible and immerse yourself in it.  Let God’s Word realign your thoughts and actions to his will.  If you know of some unrepented sin in your life, declare it, asking God for forgiveness.

Why, my soul, are you downcast?  Why so disturbed within me?  Put your hope in God, for I will yet praise him, my Saviour and my God (Psalm 42:11).

Pray:  Father, may our love for you not be dependent on our feelings, but on who you are and what you have done through your Son, Jesus Christ.  Amen

Every blessing

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