Feeling Distant From God

BRI’s NarrowBridge.Org sends out twice weekly inspiration providing a regular dose of hope, meaning and courage. These emails include small doses of Rebbe Nachman’s wisdom, enabling us to get through the week in a more spiritual way. 

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Rebbe Nachman of Breslov taught…

Reb Nosson wrote: “The essence of G-d’s greatness is that the very person who is most distant from Him can and should serve Him… There is a common misconception among young people that this principle does not apply to them, for a person may think he has too deeply tainted himself and has done too much wrong. But the truth is just the opposite ~ this principle applies especially to him! A person’s main test in life, and the essence of the refining process he must undergo, is that, through all the declines and falls and through all that he experiences, he should not allow himself to become distanced from G-d, from Torah or from prayer.”
(Healing Leaves, p. 65)

 

What does this mean to me?

In one of his fundamental lessons known as Ayeh?, Rebbe Nachman taught a basic principle of faith that has practical applications constantly, for every person: if one feels distant from G-d, it is because of a flaw in his own perception. G-d is always in every place—He is the Place of the universe, it is not His place—and there is no point or situation or moment when G-d is absent or distant. He is as close to me while I am at work as when I am in synagogue…provided that I turn my thoughts and heart to Him. When I am aware of His presence, He is near. When I am not, I feel far. The distance is imaginary, since G-d is closer to me than my own bones, my own rushing blood, the breath that is now animating my frame.

 

A prayer:

“If a person conceals himself in hidden places,
do I not seem him?” declares G-d.
Help me to fulfill the words of the verse,
“I place G-d before me constantly”
by knowing, discerning and sensing
Your awe and the truth of Your existence;
for You stand before us continually,
and nothing is hidden from Your sight.
Enable us all to realize the unity of both perceptions of G-d:
the exalted perception of those who dwell below—
that no place is empty of Your Presence;
and that of those who dwell above…
for Your greatness cannot be fathomed.
(The Flame of the Heart, p. 33)

We encourage hearing your feedback and may anonymously publish great remarks. Please send email to: yehudis.golshevsky@breslov.org

Feedback:

I would like to say that these emails somehow always come exactly whenever I need a Rabbi Nachman dose to pick me up through some nisyonos im going through lately, so i really appreciate them and even save them to reread them again and again.
HE

Thank you so much for the email beautiful ideas. They added a spark to my day!
Benyomin

Thank you from the bottom of my heart for these helpful and inspiring postings. It is delightful to be greeted by words of wisdom from the Rebbe through time and technology directly to us. This is such a blessing to all!
CS

Thank you for sending me Rebbe Nachman’s Simcha Minute.
Every Friday night my daughter & I light a candle for the neshama of Rebbe Nachman ben Faigie.
G-D Bless,
Michelle

Author: Yossi Katz

Yossi Katz currently lives in Lakewood, NJ where he runs the BRI American Office. He studied in Beth Medrash Gevoha, as well as the former Breslov Kollel of Lakewood headed by Rabbi Shlomo Goldman.

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