Are You Practicing the Absence of God?
Now there was a famine in the days of David for three years, year after year; and David inquired of the Lord. And the Lord answered, “It is because of Saul and his bloodthirsty house, because he killed the Gibeonites.” 2 Samuel 21:1 NKJV
Famine is an acute shortage of any good in life. For example, if you’re experiencing a lack of health or well-being, unemployment or under-employment, a lack of finances, broken relationships; not getting your prayers answered—any kind of lack or depravation is a famine. In the face of famine, you must learn to do what David did: inquire of the Lord, i.e., seek His face; seek the presence of the Lord. It is up to you to inquire of the Lord because you are responsible for your famine, and you have the power (Gen. 1:26; Luke 10:19)
Famine is where you are practicing the absence of God. Why? Is it because you believe that God isn’t there? Here’s how you can know that you are practicing the absence of God: consider your mood and your confession—how you feel and how you talk is telling.
If your mood is doom and gloom; fear and uncertainty; murmuring and complaining; griping and fussing; frequently annoyed and irritated; and perhaps, mad enough to “spit nails”, you are probably experiencing a spiritual famine. And, if your confession is: “I’ve got a problem”; “What am I going to do?”; “Why me?” or, “People are lying on me”, you may be experiencing an unabated famine. Tell me what you’re complaining about, or what you fear and I’ll tell you where you are practicing the absence of God.
God is always present, here and now (Ps. 139:7-8). So, when you’re practicing the absence of God, you can insidiously have a place in your belief system where God isn’t present. The truth is: the only place God isn’t present is where you believe He isn’t.
On the contrary, when you practice the presence of God, you are filled with joy in His presence, and you stand at His right hand, i.e., a position of honor, favor, and power (Ps 16:11). When you inquire of the Lord, something wonderful and marvelous happens, and you’ll begin to feel something awesome. God is good and He has laid up great blessings for you in the shelter of His presence. Yes, God laid up for us before we got here. The thing you desire is seeking you and you’ll find it when you seek the presence of the Lord! (Ps. 31:19-20).