It's a phenomenon we're all familiar with but probably don't think much about. I lived through it (and to some extent still am) this weekend. There was an internet outage in our neighborhood Friday that blew up our router. Because of this we didn't have phone or internet until Saturday afternoon. Then on Saturday morning I dropped my iPhone and it became unresponsive. Suddenly, I was at home with a toddler with no TV, no internet, and no contact with the outside world.
It's at points like these we hit our desperation. I didn't think about my internet until it disappeared, now I'm desperate to get it fixed. Our daughter has a million things to do in the house that don't involve internet or TV, but when those disappear now you get a little antsy and decide it's time to come up with a plan.
I was reading this phrase a few weeks ago in the light of Jesus' departure. While Jesus was here we/the disciples didn't need to do much. Jesus had it handled. They didn't need to preach, pray for healing, even get dinner in some cases. Jesus took care of it. But when Jesus leaves now there's a desperation of absence. Who is going to preach? Who is going to pray? Who is going to tell the world about a God who loves them?
In many ways we need to be living a little more in the desperation of absence. We need to stop thinking someone else will do it, someone else will love them, someone else will be Jesus to "them".
What if it's our turn?