It’s been nearly two months since Malaysia Airlines Flight 370 lost contact with air traffic control and seemingly disappeared into thin air.
Eight nations have since joined in the search, investing a combined total of more than $44 million in what could be the most expensive search in aviation history, according to Reuters. Searchers have deployed the finest in cutting-edge technology and the very best of their researchers in search of the missing aircraft.
A few glimmers of hope have surfaced in the search for MH370: aerial photographs of objects looking deceivingly like parts of a submerged aircraft, audio transcripts from the plane’s cockpit and those headline-making satellite “pings.”
But none of these have yielded conclusive evidence of where the aircraft finally came to rest. Nor have they succeeded in convincing skeptics that MH370 will ever be found. The world may never know what happened to MH370. The possibility of locating any of the 239 people aboard the aircraft is even slimmer. Yet the search continues, perhaps for no other reason than to satisfy human curiosity.
If multiple nations can invest such vast amounts of money and manpower in pursuit of something that may never be found, how much more ought we as Christians to invest our time, our talents and ourselves in what Scripture says is most important in life.
In the days of Jeremiah the prophet, the nation of Israel was exiled to Babylon, and it seemed that Israel’s God had disappeared from the scene. But, unlike Malaysia Airlines Flight 370, God was very near, willing and able to be found by His people, if only they took the time and effort to search for Him.
Through His messenger Jeremiah, God made this promise to captive Israel: “Ye shall seek me, and find me, when ye shall search for me with all your heart. And I will be found of you, saith the Lord: and I will turn away your captivity, and I will gather you from all the nations, and from all the places whither I have driven you, saith the Lord” (Jeremiah 29:13-14).
Like the nation of Israel in Jeremiah’s day, many believers feel that God has moved far, far away, or even completely disappeared from their lives. In reality, though, it is they and not God who have become distant. God promises that though we are unfaithful to Him, He is always near and ready to hear us if only we will seek Him.
When the apostle Paul arrived in Athens, he noted that the superstitious people “spent their time in nothing else, but either to tell, or to hear some new thing.” They were consumed with their idols, but they overlooked the one God who truly matters. Paul admonished them “that they should seek the Lord, if haply they might feel after him, and find him, though he be not far from every one of us” (Acts 17:27).
God was never really far from the Athenians or His people Israel. And He is not far from us today, if only we seek for Him with all our hearts.