To be deeply touched by God is what we all long for. Oh yeah? You may not be aware of it, but only God can touch our lives deep inside in such a way that we want to become more like Him. This is necessary, because only then can God heal people and restore the world. Are you ever touched by God so that you see the misery in the world? When I look at myself, it seems like I have become immune to it. But I don’t want that! I want to be moved by what touches God, I want to do what God has planned for me. I don’t want to be blind to what God shows me. This morning God touched me through the enormous misery in the world. The millions of people who are on the run, surviving in war, hungry, lonely, depressed or seriously ill. “The world is on fire” you say. To speak in fire brigade terms, it is now a massive fire and many fire brigades are needed to bring this fire under control . What did this overwhelm do to me at such a moment? Does it set me in motion, do I think about it, do I want to do something with it? Or does it paralyze me because the problem is way too big. What it did to me this morning is: I had a great desire to be close to God. To be with Him to discover what He thinks and to feel what He feels in order to discover what He has for me. This without being overwhelmed by the magnitude of the misery, which means there is a danger that I will do nothing at all and continue living. I do not want that! I want to become more like Jesus. He was not overwhelmed by the massive flock that had no shepherd, He continued to take what came His way. He visited Zacchaeus, He stood before the woman with the issue of blood, when people came who needed instruction, He taught them. And when He needed rest, He withdrew to rest with His Father. No doubt He will also have done something fun regularly. Over the past year, and still today, I am discovering that being close to God is the key to fruit in my life. I am particularly attracted by the text from John 15: 1-5. If I present to Him what affects me (or sometimes does not touch me and I find that strange) and ask whether He wants to shape me, then I notice that in the weeks or sometimes months afterwards He brings things my way that suit me and I would like to do for Him. For example, at the moment a refugee family from Eritrea has come to live in our neighborhood. They have been in the Netherlands for almost a year now, but are finding it very difficult in our closed culture. We got in touch because our son David is in their son’s class and are now trying to do something for them. A great opportunity to show that God is making His Kingdom visible and extinguishing the great fire step by step. Are you participating? It’s not difficult.