How to Know if You Are Running from God
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Are you tired of running from God? Maybe you’ve felt His tug in your heart for years and yet you just don’t feel willing to take a step toward Him. Perhaps the fear of change keeps holding you back, maybe pride gets in the way or maybe it’s even too confusing to know where to begin.
If this is what life looks like right now, then know there’s a way out and I’m here with some helpful insight along your journey. Despite all attempts at avoiding God, deep down inside we still have a natural need and desire to connect with Him – our loving Father who created us in His image.
If you feel restless, unsatisfied with life, or weary from your struggles, consider turning to God. Though it can feel like anguish to surrender our will to Him, He loves us and wants to bring us peace of mind and heal our heart.
If this is what you are currently experiencing–don’t worry; there is still time to turn things around! This blog post will explain how to know if you are running away from God so that you can decide with both clarity and conviction.
What Does it Mean to Run from God?
Running from God involves ignoring His Word and doing our own thing. When we run from God, we say that we don’t care about the things He cares about. We only pay attention to what we want. We don’t give Him the opportunity to change our lives. We ignore His direction, thinking we can solve our own problems.
We reject His truth. We don’t seek Him in prayer or Scripture or look for Him to guide us through the difficult times. Running from God is living as if He does not exist, acting as if we are the ones who hold all the power and control in our lives.
But running away from God only leads us further away from the life He has planned for us. We become isolated, confused, scared, and lonely instead of filled with joy, peace, and hope. The good news is that even when we’ve run far away from Him, He still pursues us relentlessly. He never gives up on us!
How to Know if We Are Running from God
When feeling guilty about the choices we make that are contrary to what we learned in the Bible, chances are we are running from God. We try to ignore the fact that God has a say in our lives, and we try to push Him away. We don’t take time for prayer or reflection about how our actions impact others.
If we are running from God, it shows in how we approach our relationships with others and how we care for ourselves. We often struggle with feelings of loneliness, emptiness, and guilt. We will also feel disconnected from God and His Word.
Signs We Might Run from God Without Realizing It
Running from God often involves subtle changes in our behavior and attitude that can be difficult to recognize. We may neglect spiritual disciplines, such as prayer, Bible study, and church attendance. We might start relying on ourselves instead of trusting God for direction.
Other signs include withholding love and forgiveness from others, running away from hard decisions and not being honest about our weaknesses. We might also run from God if we cannot accept criticism and advice from others, or if we prioritize material things over spiritual values.
Signs we might run from God without realizing it are:
Not reading the Bible
Running from God can involve ignoring the Bible. Not reading the Bible means we don’t take time to understand God better and to learn more about how He wants us to live our lives.
We won’t hear His voice in scripture, nor will we learn how to apply Biblical principles to our daily lives. When running from God, we might try to fill the emptiness with more everyday activities rather than take time to read and reflect on God’s Word.
Not praying is another way that we can run from God. When running from God, we often disconnect ourselves from prayer and the conversation it provides with Him. We may even avoid prayer altogether, or at least not make it a priority in our lives.
Through prayer, we open ourselves up to hear God’s voice and gain new insights to help us in our personal journey. By running from prayer, we close ourselves off to these conversations with God that are so beneficial in helping us live out His will for our lives.
Not thinking about things above
A common sign that we might run from God is in how we think and what occupies our thoughts. When running from God, we will not give any regard to the things above – to His Word or to His commandments, as written in scripture.
Instead, our thoughts will dwell on more everyday matters, such as entertainment, money, and otherworldly concerns. We won’t be thinking about His plan for our life. We won’t think of how we can honor Him through our thoughts and actions.
Staying away from other Christians
Staying away from other Christians is a surefire sign that one might run from God. When we are running away from Him, it’s easy to isolate ourselves, both physically and spiritually. We may not attend church services, Bible studies, or group prayer times.
We may also choose to avoid Christian friends and limit our social connections to those who do not practice faith in God. Through running away from other believers, we cut ourselves off from the Christian community. We cut ourselves off from its support system that is so vital to our spiritual growth.
Not going to church
Not going to church is another sign that we may run from God. When running from the Lord, we often avoid activities that involve connecting with Him and other believers spiritually. Not attending church services, Bible studies, or other Christian gatherings can be a clear sign of running away from God.
We don’t take time to nurture our faith, to be encouraged and challenged in it, or to gain further wisdom from God’s Word. By running away from church, we are running away from a vital part of our growth as believers.
Not looking to God for direction
Not looking to God for direction is a key sign we run from Him. When we run from God, we lose out on His guidance in our decisions and daily lives. We don’t take time to ask for help with specific situations and we don’t have an open dialogue with God to hear His voice and gain insight into what He is asking of us.
By running away from seeking God’s direction, we don’t make room for the counsel and wisdom of the Lord in our lives–an essential part of being a follower of Jesus.
Recognizing these signs can help us become more aware when we are running from God and give us the opportunity to make changes before it’s too late. We can choose to turn back towards Him, to trust in His love and incredible grace, and to put our faith in the Lord who forgives and takes us back.
With an open heart and sincere commitment, we can run towards Him instead of running away.
What Are the Consequences of Running from God?
The consequences of running from God are a life of confusion, terrible living conditions based on our bad choices, and no peace as we suffer through the consequences. Running from God also means running away from eternal life in Heaven with Him.
If we reject Jesus, it means that we are running from God and are running to a life of death and destruction.
If we don’t turn to Him and accept His grace, we will miss out on the joy and peace He offers. We’ll have no hope for eternity, only sorrow and regret. It’s not too late to turn back. All we must do is choose to follow God.
No matter what, God loves us, and He is always ready to forgive our sins. We just need to turn away from the path of running and accept His grace. When we do that, we can fill our lives with joy and hope instead of sorrow and confusion.
Overcome the Tendency to Run from God and Instead Learn to Trust Him
Learning to stop running from God involves learning who God is, learning what He wants, and a desire to turn from doing things our way, and instead, seeking God’s way. Simply put, learning to stop running from God involves total obedience to Him. That means having faith in Him, trusting His Word, and understanding that He is our ultimate source of strength and guidance.
To get to this point, we need to make it a daily habit to pray and read God’s Word (the Bible) regularly. This habit of prayer is not to say a few recited words once a day, but to have constant conversations with God, and to receive His direction. When we do this consistently, we will see the peace and joy that comes from living in obedience to Him.
Develop a Habit of Devotion
Reading and studying the Bible is not to just “check a box,” but to learn who God is, and to understand His character and plans for our lives. It’s important to remember that the Bible is not a book of rules or regulations, but an opportunity to get to know God on a personal level.
Developing a habit of prayer and Bible study takes time and effort and will also involve some uncomfortable moments as we step out in faith. But when we make the commitment to turn away from running and instead seek God’s will in our lives–we will find a peace that surpasses all understanding.
We must also build relationships with other believers who can help us stay accountable. Fellowship with other believers can help us stay focused on following God’s Word as we support each other in times of trouble. By surrounding ourselves with godly influences, it will be easier to make wise choices and stay in step with God.
Finally, we must accept God and His will for our lives. When we do this, running from Him no longer becomes an option.
All of us run from God. We may run away through our own pride, unbelief, or fear. But by drawing closer to Him and trusting in His power and provision, we can overcome the pull of our natural selves away from the Lord. And if we stay humble, purposeful, and passionate in our relationship with the Lord, then we will recognize the signs of running from God and turn towards Him instead.
We can accomplish all this when we submit to His Word. Remember, God is faithful even when it feels dark. Believe that He works all things together for good. With that in mind, let us take these lessons with us and know the signs of running from God–so that by living this out day by day, we can commit ourselves to trust Him more fully.
For further study on how to stop running from God, check out my new book, Are You Tired of Running from God? A Four-Week Bible Study on How to Find Rest in God’s Arms.