Hear our cry, Lord, we pray
Our faces down, our hands are raised
You called us out, we turned away
We've turned away
With shipwrecked faith the idols rise
We do what is right in our own eyes
Our children now will pay the price
We need Your light, Lord, shine Your light
If we've ever needed You
Lord, it's now, Lord, it's now
We are desperate for Your hand
We're reaching out, we're reaching out
These are some of the lyrics to Casting Crown's, "If We've Ever Needed You" (I hope they are accurate, I cut and pasted from the web). I think the chorus points out what the root problem is, and I am in no way knocking the song, but we have a faulty way of thinking. Well, I should probably say a faulty way of living, because we "know" the right answers.
One of our biggest problems, as I see it, is that we are not aware of our constant need of God. It's only when we have trouble that we turn and say, "I need you." The truth is that we are never more, or less, in need of God. We might have times that we are more, or less, aware of it, but the need is always there.
I believe that where we get in trouble is that when things are good, we drift along thinking we're doing a pretty good job managing our lives, not acknowledging the One who gives us the breath of life each day. Who knows how much He intervenes on our behalf (behalves? ;) daily? The hardest thing to do, to me, is to stay connected when life is good...no one has trouble staying near to God when life is hard. What I mean is, we seek Him more readily, even if we don't necessarily have an awareness of His nearness to us. We do our part.
That's why God said in Deuteronomy (to the people about to enter the Promised Land):
When you have eaten and are satisfied, praise the LORD your God for the good land he has given you. Be careful that you do not forget the LORD your God, failing to observe his commands, his laws and his decrees that I am giving you this day. Otherwise, when you eat and are satisfied, when you build fine houses and settle down, and when your herds and flocks grow large and your silver and gold increase and all you have is multiplied, then your heart will become proud and you will forget the LORD your God, who brought you out of Egypt, out of the land of slavery...You may say to yourself, “My power and the strength of my hands have produced this wealth for me.” But remember the LORD your God, for it is he who gives you the ability to produce wealth, and so confirms his covenant, which he swore to your forefathers, as it is today.
There are other passages of scripture, too, that make it clear that destruction follows when we forget God...and that tends only to happen when life is good. I like it when life is good. I like my Life is Good stickers. And my coffee cups. But God help me to stay grounded, focused and close when things are great so that I don't have to work so hard when things get difficult. There's a lot less ground to cover when you've never left the throne room.