Closer Than Close

January 13, 2020


Closer Than Close - Devotional Message from Mark Batterson

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Genesis 1:1-2 – “In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth. The earth was formless and void, and darkness was over the surface of the deep, and the Spirit of God was moving over the surface of the waters.”

Long before the Holy Spirit filled or stirred or gifted or convicted or sealed or revealed or reminded, we find Him hovering over the surface of the deep.  And He is still hovering over our lives the way He hovered over creation.

He still speaks light into darkness.

He still brings order out of chaos.

He still makes beauty out of ashes.

The Hebrew word used to describe God’s proximity is paniym, and it’s multidimensional. In regard to time, paniym refers to the split second before and the split second after—a parenthesis in time. In regard to space, paniym refers to the place right in front and right in back—a parenthesis in space.

He is God with us in every sense of the word.

He is a friend that sticks closer than a brother!

A.W. Tozer pictured paniym this way: “God is above, but He’s not pushed up. He’s beneath, but He’s not pressed down. He’s outside, but He’s not excluded. He’s inside, but He’s not confined. God is above all things presiding, beneath all things sustaining, outside of all things embracing and inside of all things filling.”

The Holy Spirit is hovering. The Holy Spirit is whispering. The Holy Spirit is breathing into you the same breath He breathed into the dust bowl named Adam.

Mark Batterson serves as lead pastor of National Community Church in Washington, DC. NCC also owns and operates Ebenezers Coffeehouse, The Miracle Theatre, and the DC Dream Center. Mark holds a doctor of ministry degree from Regent University and is the New York Times bestselling author of 17 books, including The Circle Maker, Chase the Lion, and Whisper. Mark and his wife, Lora, have three children and live on Capitol Hill.

Mark’s book, Whisper, helps readers learn how to listen to God. Mark wants to introduce you to the seven love languages of God; each of them unique and entirely divine. Some of them you might suspect but others will surprise you.

By learning to tune in to and decipher each language, you’ll be able to hear His guidance in simple as well as life-altering choices. God is actively speaking through: Scripture, Desires, Doors, Dreams, People, Promptings, and Pain. Batterson gives you the tools you need to unlock each of these languages.



  1. Sheryl Smith on January 15, 2020 at 5:06 am

    God is amazing so glad I found this on Facebook about Marks books

  2. Jeannie Gerhardt on January 17, 2020 at 1:07 pm

    Just finished reading, “Not Safe.” It’s my first Mark Batterson book. I live on the West Coast, and have labored a long time at a vision God has put in my heart that I cannot let go. This book has been such an encouragement to me. I manage a library for the homeschool community and anyone else who wants to borrow Godly books with powerful messages. I’ve added, “Not Safe,” to our library, but would like to add more of his books. Are there any discounts for people purchasing for libraries? I’m not a 501C3 yet…long story…old building….private…etc. but am not letting go of this dream of setting people free from a “classroom mindset” to learning. I’m posting quotes from his book daily until I run out and already several of my unsaved friends are asking for more….”why does God bring complications when He’s already God and could’ve made life without any?” What a stirring up this book has caused in my own little circles. Please thank Mr. Batterson for not living a safe life and encouraging others to do the same. Many blessings in the form of complications on your day today!

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