Dear brothers and sisters in Christ,
Today's reading from the psalter in the Treasury of Daily Prayer is Psalm 71:12-16.
Consider especially verse 12:
O God, be not far from me;
O my God, make haste to help me!
When do you feel far from God?
When repetitive sin strikes fear in your heart? When stricken with illness and feeling helpless? When accused, yet innocent? The answers may be as varied as the people giving them.
Someone once said, "When you feel far from God, guess who has moved."
The order of Matins begins with these words of the psalmist, and shortly thereafter, moves to singing the Venite--O Come, Let us to the Lord.
In it are just a few reminders that God is not far off:
O Come, let us sing to the Lord, let us make a joyful noise to the rock of our salvation. Let us come into His presence with thanksgiving, let us make a joyful nose to Him with songs of praise. For the Lord is a great God, and a great king above all gods. The deep places of the earth are in His hand; the strength of the hills is His also. The sea is His, for He made it, and His hand formed the dry land, O Come, let us worship and bow down, let us kneel before the Lord, our maker. For He is our God, and we are the people of His pasture and the sheep of His hand.
It is impossible to be far from God--the deep places of the earth are in His hand. You are the people of His pasture, and John 10 says that you sheep dwell securely in His hand, from which no one can snatch you.
And so, in order to remind you of His gracious presence in your life, He sends His Word. You receive His holy Absolution, the Gospel is preached, His Supper is given into your mouths, and you read, mark, learn and inwardly digest His Word as you study the holy Scriptures.
God is not some nebulous force, or a "father time" that stands above (apart) from His creation. One of His names is Immanuel, God with us, so if you feel as though God is far from you, simply abide in His Word, where He has promised to be for your benefit.
Getting closer? He was there all along!