It's what all of us crave. We all seek it. Social media has created a vacuum of presence in our society. We've learned to be "present" in a room while connecting via text with friends, replying to a Facebook message or two, tweeting 140 characters of pithy-ness at some idiosyncratic corner of pop culture, liking a few Instagram photos and possibly pinning a recipe... all while sitting in the same room with other human beings. It is sad. We have learned to live a distant life in an uber "connected" world. It has become normal and even comfortable to hide behind screens and busy schedules.
And yet, we still crave presence. We need it. We need it from people. We need to be seen... to be heard... to be understood... We need to offer our presence to other people. We need to look someone in the eyes... listen to the cry of their soul... and comprehend who they are. That is part of being human. We were designed to trust one another. We were created for intimacy. One of the greatest gifts we can give to another person is the gift of our presence.
Deeper still, there is a Presence that we need more than that of anyone else. That Presence belongs to the One who knows us better than we know ourselves, Our Creator and Father. His Presence is Real... He is the Realest place to be in the world. He makes Himself available to us. In fact, His Presence pursues us. How often do we wish someone would pursue us... long to be near us? Our Father does. He does not pursue us out of insecurity, but out of a deep love for what is His. He offers us ALL of Himself and He desires ALL of us. He wants us to come to Him with unveiled faces.
Whenever, though, they turn to face God as Moses did, God removes the veil and there they are—face-to-face! They suddenly recognize that God is a living, personal presence, not a piece of chiseled stone. And when God is personally present, a living Spirit, that old, constricting legislation is recognized as obsolete. We’re free of it! All of us! Nothing between us and God, our faces shining with the brightness of his face. And so we are transfigured much like the Messiah, our lives gradually becoming brighter and more beautiful as God enters our lives and we become like him. 2 Corinthians 3:16-17 (MSG)
Ironically, we fail to even recognize this Presence... His Presence is nearer to us than our next breath... He is as present to us as we allow Him to be... as present to us as we are to Him. Sometimes it takes effort to be aware His Presence. It requires a stripping away of those things in us that are afraid. A stripping away of self-sufficiency. A stripping away of unprocessed emotions. A stripping away of pride. A stripping away of unbelief. A stripping away of what appears to be real. And, it requires desperation...hunger... willingness... for the safety of His Presence.
Carve out space in me, Spirit of God. Cultivate in me a greater capacity to hear You... a sharper sensitivity to Your Voice... May I cherish Your Presence.