By Dr. Michael Layne
---- — u·biq·ui·tous
Being or seeming to be everywhere at the same time; omnipresent:
Psalm 138:7-8 (Ps 139 in Protestant Bible) “Where can I go from Your Spirit? Or where can I flee from Your presence? If I ascend into heaven, You are there; If I make my bed in hell, behold, You are there.”
When I was in first grade, I walked four blocks to school. We lived on North Market Street in Springfield, Ohio, and I would turn left onto Center Street and proceed directly to the school on West Pleasant Street.
Crossing Washington Street could be a bit tricky as the New York Central train tracks ran down the middle of the street, but the railroad watchman that would halt traffic when a train approached would escort me across the street so, I felt safe.
The one thing about my grandma, who would escort me to the corner of Market and Center Streets, would always admonish me to “Walk, don’t run!” After I got around the corner, I would look back to see if she was watching. For some reason I always felt that woman was ubiquitous. I would start running and on a couple of occasions I would hear, “Boy, STOP running!” or when I got home at the end of the school day she would tell me that she knew I was running to school and that I had better quit it.
I didn’t know how she knew so much about my activities then, I became a parent and, it just happens. We know what those kids are doing or, at least we make them believe we know what they are doing. It’s a parent thing.
I remember coming home from school one day and grandma turned me over her knee and gave me a few swats on the backend. I asked, “Why are you spanking me?” She said, “You know what you did!”
For once, she didn’t know what I did? I must tell you that to this day, I have no idea what that spanking was for. I just chalked it up to those times I didn’t get caught doing something I shouldn’t.
As a Christian, I believe God is ubiquitous or omnipresent. In other words he is everywhere. The Psalmist is talking about that in today’s scripture passage. He asks, “Where can I go from your Spirit?” The answer is, as long as we are in this world, nowhere for He is everywhere.
To the non-believer, that just doesn’t sound reasonable. I understand that and that is why we call it “faith.” We have faith that what we read in the bible is correct and the insight of those who lived those hundreds and thousands of years gone by have a certain insight that we don’t have, so we read what they have to say and because of the rigors of acceptance of the scripture by the church fathers and other theologians, we have faith in their opinion and writings.
So, while I had the feeling my grandmother was all seeing and, all present, I certainly understand that God most definitely is. Faith? Sure, that what it takes. The wisdom of this world just never has been able to accept or, explain everything about God.
For me, I just trust in the Word of God to guide me through those things that I have no understanding of. Give Him a chance to work in you. When you are faced with a situation that just doesn’t seem to have an answer, ask for His assistance.
I will be conducting a series of studies called: “Come Thirsty: Receive what your soul longs for,” beginning Wednesday, Oct. 9 at 6:30 pm. Call for more information.
The Most Rev. Michael Layne, PhD, ThD, can be reached at 812-614-2160 or, through http://www.doclayne.com/
Layne will be guest pastor at St. John’s Lutheran Church, Napoleon, this Saturday at 6 p.m. and Sunday at 10 a.m.