Short of having a close and cherished relationship with God we often find ourselves in rough and ragged spiritual condition. Without personal closeness to God mankind wavers about with a tepid spiritual temperature adrift in storms of life tossed about like a boat that has wandered away from the safety of the shore and is aimlessly tossed about in the waves of a storm.
The Bible talks about the prodigal son who chose to “live it up” as he spent time dwelling according to his own will in a distant land. He was living it up in a life characterized by a backsliden spiritual condition. The prodigal son spent time celebrating his new found “freedom” in life wandering aimlessly without giving regard to the authority or the things of God; having lost his spiritual and moral anchor and living friendly and co-conspirator alongside the dark army of the god of this world.
The prodigal son chose to drift away from the things of God by blindly following is unreliable emotions and feelings; celebrating in the moments of here and now, instead of looking and living towards an eternal future with God.
This life the Prodigal son lived in the fast lane was far removed from living according to the inner leading of the Holy Spirit. It was life lived upon the widened pathway in the flesh in the midst of spiritual darkness and wickedness following after the god of this world rather than living along the narrow pathway according to God’s perfect will and plan.
Professing Christians all face difficult seasons of life and are guilty of making occasional emotional and irrational decisions based upon the fleshly things of this world rather than their making decisions based or substantiated upon the Truth of God’s Word. A differentiating factor is whether occasional rash decisions in the flesh are made and repented from; or rash decisions are made and a person chooses to dwell in the ungodly choice; growing spiritual roots in things which are in enmity against the will and way of God.
A distant country is located anywhere which is outside the will of God for our life. God does have a perfect plan for every individual’s life. He desires mankind live as foreigners and strangers as they sojourn upon this earth and live as residents of the heavenly eternal realm.
Each decision we make as we live upon this earth bears spiritual weight affecting our relationship with God; bringing us closer to His will for our life; or creating spiritual distance away from the things of God; lining up with the dark plan of the god of this world.
Space between you and the will of God for your life always begins with small and often unnoticeable missteps or decisions routinely made in our fast paced lives not lining up with the will of God. This spiritual mismanagement creates a wedge or small gap that quickly widens allowing a wider gulf or a ravine serving to separate us from God. God never turns His back or walks away from us; mankind is always the estranged party in the spiritual relationship. It is man who has taken his eyes away from the things of God. God always has us in His view.
A biblical example of a spiritual relationship with God that became wide or distant includes the biblical example of Lot’s life after God removed him from the sin and shame of an ungodly lifestyle in Sodom. Lot later chose to place his tent towards the gates of Sodom. It did not seem like a horrible decision or error in judgment upfront, but ended up being a much unwise decision in the end as Lot was drawn back into the sin of the city.
Or perhaps looking at the biblical account of Abraham agreeing to his wife’s crazy self-motivated plan to bring Abraham a heir by coaxing him to lie with her concubine. This plan seemed logical and was fruitful in producing a heir; but was all according to man’s limited reasoning and timing and not according God’s perfect plan. Since it was not God’s perfect plan leading Abraham, Sara, and Hagar into sin instead of towards the holiness of God.
But, praise God, just like the prodigal son, God welcomes all wayward sheep back into His fold with unconditionally loving arms as we spiritually see the error of our way against the holiness and perfection of God. It is only when we see our need for His presence in our life do we become humble and gracious; returning from our journey into the far country or out into the back side of a desert and onto moving forward along His narrow pathway as we sojourn upon the earth.
God desires that all mankind live upon this earth as strangers in a foreign country; not dwelling among the residents speaking the native language and entrenched in the army of the god of this world; but rather speaking of His holiness and godliness sounding as pilgrims and strangers upon the earth.
If you have been living as a resident of this world coming back to acknowledge your personal need for God and desire to live as an alien towards the things of this world receptive unto the spiritual things of God he gladly welcomes you back inside the sheep fold with a warm reception complete with His royal robe and a feast fit for a child of The King!
God desires for mankind to see the things of this world through His spiritual lens; living as strangers and foreigners estranged from the lifestyle of the god of this world. Are you a resident of this world or of eternity to come?