I’m sure by now, most of you reading this have heard of Dr. Gary Chapman’s book The 5 Love Languages. It was all the rave 10 years ago and is still very popular today. Dr. Chapman’s book captivates the attention of readers because we seek to know the best way to love our partner, our children and our friends. We desire to know how we can serve and love them better, and The 5 Love Languages is an instrument that provides valuable insight into how to do that.
For those who aren’t familiar with Dr. Chapman’s book, he writes about the five primary ways people show and receive love: receiving gifts, acts of service, quality time, words of affirmation and physical touch.
As I was thinking about the five love languages, I realized that while the Lord is able to show us love through most of these ways, it can sometimes be difficult for those needing physical touch to feel God’s love.
In May of this year, I received news that a client I had been working with for three months made the choice to take his life. For three months I fought desperately to keep him out of the hospital, keep him off drugs and keep him alive. He was doing so well, and I had hope he would continue on the path to success. But sadly, that was not the case. He chose to end his life, and I was unexpectedly torn to pieces with grief over this loss. I wrestled with taking on the responsibility of his death and blaming myself. I cried myself to sleep for days in a row, not knowing how to deal with the emotions I was feeling.
In those moments of intense emotion, all I wanted was to lay in the arms of someone who loved me. To feel the warmth of their embrace. But as a single person whose family is more than three hours away, that just wasn’t an option for me.
I cried out to God, begging Him for comfort. I knew He was there, but He couldn’t provide the thing I needed most—to literally feel His touch. He comforted me with His Word, He reminded me He was indeed near, but it just wasn’t the same.
I can’t help but wonder if there are others of you who have felt the way I did in those moments, desperately longing for God’s physical touch. I would have given anything to have a moment with God similar to what Jeremiah experienced. To have the Lord reach out from Heaven to touch my lips and give me His words—what an incredibly special moment Jeremiah shared with the Lord.
The Lord designed us to crave more of Him, to long to feel closer to Him. There will be times when we will long to feel the Lord’s touch. In those moments, I hope you will be encouraged by some of these verses that have provided me strength in those times.
Remember, even when we aren’t able to physically feel the Lord’s presence, He promises us He is always there.
Deuteronomy 31:6: “Be strong and of good courage, do not fear nor be afraid of them: for the Lord your God, He is the One who goes with you. He will not leave you nor forsake you.”
God is extending His hand to you. He promises to help in times of trouble. Reach out to Him; He’s there.
Isaiah 41:13: “For I, the Lord your God, will hold your right hand, saying to you, ‘Fear not, I will help you.'”
God has given us His Word to provide strength, encouragement and comfort. If you are finding yourself longing for Him, dig into His word. It will bring you closer to Him.
Psalm 119:50: “This is my comfort in my affliction. For Your words have given me life.”
God will provide peace of mind. Keep your mind focused on Him and He will give you peace.
Isaiah 26:3: “You will keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on You, because he trusts You.”
These verses have been instrumental in helping illustrate a picture of closeness with the Lord when I seek to feel more of His presence. He loves you and longs to hold you closely in His arms.