How do we know that God is there?
It’s a good question and it depends on what we mean by ‘know’. The Psalmist says the fool says in their heart that there is no God. Romans suggests that God’s eternal power and glory are clearly seen in what he has made. Ervin Drake’s song, made popular by Elvis, puts it like this: –
Every time I hear a new born baby cry, Or touch a leaf or see the sky Then I know why, I believe.
For many of us, we see God most clearly in creation. However, that is an affirmation rather than a proof. Cynics and sceptics see the same wonders but just see them as awe inspiring rather than as spiritual. The missing ingredient is faith.
Hebrews puts it like this.
(Heb 11:1) To have faith is to be sure of the things we hope for, to be certain of the things we cannot see.
However, once you have faith God makes himself known in the little things. I think of them as light touches on the shoulder through which God whispers, ‘It’s okay I am here, and this is just a small sign’.
God laid on two small signs for us last week. We took a trip on the Bluebell Railway in Sussex. The carriages are decorated with travel adverts from the days of steam travel. This carriage had an advert with a picture of Lee Abbey where we met five years ago this week. The first thing we did together was to share an outing on a steam train. Then a few days later we walked with my sister along the Thames Embankment and what should we see going past but the sister ship of a cruise liner on which we have spent two wonderful holidays. On both occasions I felt that tap on the shoulder that is accompanied by a sense of God at work. Some call things coincidence but people of faith think of these same things as god-incidence. May he continue to touch all of us with his love.