"For God has said, 'I will never leave you. I will never forsake you.' " Hebrews 13:5....."And be sure of this: I am with you always, even to the end of the age." Matthew 28:20...."God does not leave. God does not forsake. In every season, in every moment, God is in the room......God in the room transitions our souls from visiting a well, to living in a spring......God in the room means that Immanuel - God with us - is more than a song." Alicia Britt Chole
I love the above quotes from Chole, one of my favorite writers. She prefaced them with a short story of her counseling of a friend who was walking through a very dark night of the soul. She asked her friend, "Where's God?" The friend responded with a very puzzled look. Chole probed deeper, asking, "Where's God in the picture?" Her friend considered that for a few moments, realizing that however many elements might be in her picture, the Father was not among them. She replied, "Nowhere! He's not even in the room."
How many times have you and I looked at our lives and thought the same, saw the same? How many times and in how many places has the "picture" we're seeing contained every threat and danger, every possible fear, every worst thing we could imagine? How many times have we seen all of that so clearly, and yet never saw Him at all? How many more times will there be? Why is it that we know so little of what it is to "abide" in Him?
Beth Moore once compared the lives of many believers to that of Hagar, banished to the desert with a skin of water. We go through life with skins of water that we get filled at various, but sporadic encounters with Him. Then we go out into a totally fallen and hostile world and find that the skin is unable to sustain us in the midst of it. Yet all the while Jesus doesn't offer us a paltry skin. He invites us to dwell in the well of His Living Water. In its never ending supply. That is what it is to abide. We don't make visits to the well, we live in the Spring that feeds the well. He doesn't call us to make periodic check-ins with Him. He calls us to live in Him. So many live for, few enter into life with and in Him. The two are as different as darkness and light.
We seem to know very well how to go to Him for things. We're mostly ignorant as to how to live in Him as the only thing. The consequence of it all will be a reaction just like Chole's friend. We will live our lives as if He were someplace else. We have a vague awareness, like that of a loved friend or family member that we've not seen for many years. We have little if any awareness of Him being totally present with us. As the old song goes, "He was/is there all the time." We just don't see or know Him there.
I believe, no, I know, that we can live lives totally immersed in Him. Saturated in His Life, Love, and Presence. The skins and canteens can be discarded. We can jump into the springs of His Living Water, and we never have to leave. Threats and dangers will come. Darkness may be upon us. We rise above them all as we drink and abide in the Living Water of His Life. No matter how black the room may get, we know, without doubt, that God is in the room......and though it may not look, feel, or seem so, all is well because He is. He is Lord of the contents of every room of our lives.