day 8 title

Raise your hand if you’ve ever heard something like this (fill in your blanks):

If you go ______ (certain places) or do ______ (certain actions), God won’t come with you.

Though expressed with good intentions at heart, it’s a rather ominous thought. The hope is for us to guard our hearts spiritually, choosing our entertainments and personal pleasures wisely. There are those who believe and teach that some behaviors could take us away from the presence of God and His love.

In suggesting that our choices may cause God to abandon us, this snowballs into the belief that He isn’t always with us 24-7-365. We start to rely on our feelings as indicators of His presence. Good times mean God is there while hardships prove His absence.

While trudging through life’s valleys, we may feel noticeably isolated. Deafened by the overwhelming silence, we mistake no sound for God’s absence. It’s hard to pray—with and without faith. Our heads know we’re supposed to pray, but we hesitate, doubtful of its effectiveness while we’re in a valley.

The truth is that God is always there. He is always with us, no ifs, ands, or buts. Every decision we make will not bring Him joy, especially when we choose sin over obedience. But God never stops loving us. Ever!

How can we learn these truths? How can we boost our confidence in His presence?

We need to know God personally; we need to know Him for ourselves. Being exposed to Christian teachings at church, in Bible studies, and through Christ-like people are all good things. However, access to God is not restricted to a second-hand experience. Each one of us should invest in our relationship with God. The revelations of truth that come when we pray and read scripture for ourselves, the peace that God gives to soothe our weary souls is unmatched.

As we have a deeper experience with God, we will notice His presence at all times, in all places and know that He is there.

Especially when we’re going through the valleys.

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{This post is part 8 of 10. The entire series is found on the introductory page, A Deeper Experience.}

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Sabrina Jacques-Rowe
Communication Leader
Henderson Highway Church

© 2018 Henderson Highway Seventh-day Adventist Church

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