A Google view of God?
I recently took a personal retreat to what is now one of my favorite places in Michigan- Pigeon River Country State Forest. Being that it is a State Forest, camping is permitted anywhere. I found a beautiful spot near a lake and set up my tent. The next morning was frigid but as the sun rose so did the temps. The trees reflected their reds and yellows on the water and the sky was a dark bold blue.
I carried my camp chair to the edge of the lake and with bible and journal in hand, sat down to enjoy the solitude with a warm cup of coffee. Across the lake a doe and her fawn walked together. The playful fawn lured her mother out into the water to run and splash together. The distant sounds reached me just after the graceful movements took place.
I felt very alive in those moments. I sat for a long time, occasionally breaking my stillness to write in my journal. I sensed the Lord’s presence with me and I responded with words of praise intermixed with long quiet times just resting and enjoying my Father and His creation. It was hard to leave but the time came to head for home.
Later, back home I searched on google maps and sure enough, there was my lake. I clicked closer- finding the exact spot my chair had been. Truly amazing. I love to show the google view to others and tell stories of the various places I hiked and the place I sat. But, obviously it is not the same as being there. Even though I can find the very spot I sat, it does not translate into the same awe and awareness of God’s presence.
It is far too easy to live with a google view of God- all the right descriptive words but not the presence, theologically correct but relationally distant. May we hear the invitation today to put down the books, stop the discussion, turn off the music, cease all the effort and come sit for awhile and enjoy our God.
I’m thinking God really meant it when He said “Be still and know that I am God”.