We have a big God, but sometimes we say, ‘Where are you, God?’
MARCH 14, 2023
We have a big God, but sometimes we say, “Where are you, God?” Let’s talk about it, on this edition of Key Life.
If you’ve suffered too long under a do more, try harder religion. Key Life is here to proclaim that Jesus sets the captives free. Steve invited Pete Alwinson to teach us this week. Pete is a former pastor, founder of ForgeTruth.com and the author of Like Father Like Son.
Hey Key Life. Happy Tuesday. This is Pete Alwinson and I’m filling in this week for Steve Brown. And I’m so glad to be with you. And we’re in a short series this week entitled, Experiencing Awesome: Enjoying God Transformed by His Greatness. And yesterday we talked a little bit about the Aseity of God or of the reality that God has self existent. And how that inevitably teaches us that God is absolutely sovereign. He is God El Shaddai, Almighty God. And today we want to talk a little bit more about who God is, as we talk about his infinity, his immensity, and his omnipresence. You say, what are you talking about? Well, as we talk about God himself, we learned so much about how he has revealed himself to us. And he is infinite and immense and omnipresent. But you know, the reality is, is that sometimes as big as God is, as big as this world is, sometimes we wake up and we say, God, where are you? I know the Bible says you’re big, but where are you? I’ve got to tell you about my oldest son, Joel, he’s a serial entrepreneur, which means that he would rather work 90 hours a week, in the chaos for himself than 40 hours a week for somebody else in the relative calm of an office. Now, listen, he’s got other talents too, so I’m not going to lie, he can put on a spectacular firework demonstration. I mean, every 4th of July he puts it together. And on my wife, his mother’s birthday, he does this incredible fireworks demonstration. Now, guys like fireworks. We like to light things on fire. We like boom and bombs. We like all that stuff. But the thing about fireworks that all of us like is they make us look up and they make us say, whoa, that is awesome. Well, the reality is as we look at the attributes of God, we see the awesomeness of God. We live in a world that is always trying to get us to promote our awesomeness, to brand ourselves, promote ourselves, pump ourselves up, to believe in ourselves, have confidence in ourselves. And that’s not bad, I mean, we’ve got to work. And that’s cool. And I love to better myself and I, listen, it’s a part of my sin nature to want to promote myself. A while back I read the book Chasing Perfection [note title is actually Chasing Excellence] by Ben Bergeron, who’s the coach for Mat Fraser and Katrin Davidsdottir who were at that time, two of the fittest people in the world in the CrossFit games. It got me pumped up, but all it really taught about was about how to pursue the very best me. And pursuing me is so empty. And so, when we look up at the amazing, spectacular fireworks, that’s cool, that’s wonderful. And there are impressive athletes, but only God is truly awesome. In some dark moments of our life we say, God, where are you? Where are you? Well, the attributes of God’s infinity and His immensity and His omnipresence all deal with the whole issue of space. And that’s important because we are creatures who live in space and time and history. And so, when we think about God, where are you? Sometimes as we read Scripture, we see the infinity of God, which says, I’m really outside of everything. I’m not confined to this world or even to this universe. I’m infinite, Job 11, verse 7 says.
Can you find out the deep things of God? Can you find out the limit of the Almighty? It is higher than heaven– what can you do? Deeper than Sheol– what can you know? Its measure is longer than the earth and broader than the sea. If he passes through and imprisons and summons the court, who can turn him back?
Can we find out the deep things of God? No way. So far, one of the friends of Job has got it right. God has no limits. And his greatness and power and character are infinite. Psalm 1:45 says
Great is the Lord and greatly to be praised, and his greatness is unsearchable.
And so, the reality is that we understand that God is really outside of all that is, and that can make us feel very, very small, especially when we feel alone, until we read Psalm 139, verse 13.
For you formed my inward parts. You knitted me together in my mother’s womb. I praise you for I am fearfully and wonderfully made.
Because God is infinite, he’s outside all that is, but his power is so great that he designed us. It’s shocking, I know, to even think that because God is infinite, he’s infinite in his righteousness and holiness, and that scares us because Matthew 5:18 or 48 says
You therefore must be perfect as your heavenly Father is perfect.
Ah, but we aren’t perfect. And so, that’s why the gospel is such great news, that the God who is infinite and who designed us from the inside out and who knows us. Knows that we are not infinite. And so, he has sent the infinite Savior for us, Jesus, who paid for our sins perfectly on the Cross, so that we could be brought to God. God, where are you? Well, I am infinite, but I want you to know I’m bigger than all of space. I fill all of space. That’s what we mean when we talk about the immensity of God. I’m all around you. I fill all the space. I love it when we think of the reality that when you’re praying, I can pray too. That when a pastor’s praying on Sunday morning in Florida, a pastor’s praying around the world in another country. And God hears those prayers because even though he’s infinite, he is immense. That in his bigness, he fills all space. I Kings 8:27 says.
But will God indeed dwell on the earth? Behold, heaven and the highest heaven cannot contain you; how much less this house that I have built!
And so, wherever you are, God is in his immensity and so in those times that you feel like God, where are you? Stop and think of that passage in I Kings and and think about the reality that God in his being is so big that he fills all space. He’s not part with me and part with you and part with the Chinese overseas. He’s everywhere in all of his being with us right now. He’s right here now, as I record this message for you. And that’s why when we say, God, where are you? We don’t need to fret because of people who are in power over us or who we must serve underneath us or who are equal to us. The God of the universe can give us strength to deal with the issues around us. And so, that leads us to the reality of God’s omnipresence. Psalm 139
Where can I go from your Spirit? Where can I flee from your presence? If I ascend to heaven, you’re there! If I make my bed in Sheol, you are there!
Can God help us in our health problems? Well, of course. Can God help us in our marriage, in our work, in raising a rebellious kid, in our anger, in our upbringing? He far off, right? No, no. He is always present in all of his fullness. And so, we really knew because of the gospel, need to ask ourselves that question, how big is your God?
Am I a God at hand, declares the Lord, and not a God far away?
Yes, he is God nearby. God is in my space, and he’s in your space as well. He’s infinite, yes. But he’s immense and he fills all that space and he’s omnipresent and he knows what you’re thinking on the inside, what you’re feeling on the inside. And in those moments, he knows when you say God, where are you? He’s there, as you face, and as I face a really, really broken world, we have to deal with the reality that God is with us. I love the guy who wrote at the beginning of the year.
Dear God, all I ask is for a big fat bank account and a slim body. Please don’t mix those up like you did last year.
We can pray because God hears our prayers, because he knows what we’re going through, because he cares, he’s involved, and he listens. He’s in our space. You know, the other morning I woke up and I’m a positive guy. And I always have what I call my daily appointment with God. And I woke up and I was lonely and fearful and afraid, and I said, God, I’m not like this most of the time, but I feel very alone in all of these decisions. And he flipped me to Psalm 16, and I realized he will never leave me nor forsake me. And he won’t leave you. You take it to heart. Amen.
And that was Pete Alwinson continuing to teach us about enjoying God. Thank you Pete. More good stuff tomorrow. Hope you will join us. Well, like I mentioned during the introduction, Pete is not just a friend and a teacher, and Steve’s former pastor, he’s also an author. We have a lot of authors around Key Life, including of course our own dr. Brown. If you somehow haven’t heard, Steve does have a new book out called Laughter and Lament. And to celebrate that launch, we did a special episode of Steve Brown Etc. several months ago. It was kind of a big deal. It was the first episode we’ve ever recorded live in front of a studio audience. It was so much fun. But listen, don’t, don’t take my word for it. Check it out for yourself. We put the whole episode on CD and if it’s okay with you, we’ll just send it to you, for free. Claim your copy right now by calling us at 1-800-KEY-LIFE. That’s 1-800-539-5433. You can also e-mail [email protected] and ask for that CD. And if you’d like to mail your request, just go to keylife.org/contact to find our mailing addresses. Just ask for your free copy of the Laughter and Lament episode of Steve Brown Etc. And finally, a question, have you ever considered partnering in the work of Key Life through your giving? Giving is easy. You can charge a gift on your credit card. You can include a gift in your envelope. Or simply pick up your phone and text Key Life to 28950 to give safely and securely. Key Life is a member of ECFA in the States and CCCC in Canada. And as always, Key Life is a listener supported production of Key Life Network.