Why Doesn't God Reveal Himself More Easily?

A frequent complaint by atheists (and some Christians too!) is the question of if God is real, why doesn't He reveal himself more clearly and easily?  This is an intriguing question.  One part of the answer seems to come from God, another from us.

 
Let's look at God's part first.  Evidently, he doesn't wish to make himself visible to us easily.  Is this because he wanted us to have as much Free Will as possible? Or is it because we are too sinful to handle the sight of him? Or is it because (after the fall of Adam and Eve), we we are living in enemy-occupied territory - which surely cannot be a pleasing environment for him? On the other hand, recall that he sent his only son Jesus to live among us sinners (and not only to live among us for a time, but to die and rise again so that we may live). So while the current Earth is an abhorrent and sinful environment, it cannot be the sole reason that God doesn't reveal himself to us readily.  A clue is given in the scripture involving Doubting Thomas:

 
Now Thomas (also known as Didymus), one of the Twelve, was not with the disciples when Jesus came. So the other disciples told him, “We have seen the Lord!” But he said to them, “Unless I see the nail marks in his hands and put my finger where the nails were, and put my hand into his side, I will not believe.” A week later his disciples were in the house again, and Thomas was with them. Though the doors were locked, Jesus came and stood among them and said, “Peace be with you!” Then he said to Thomas, “Put your finger here; see my hands. Reach out your hand and put it into my side. Stop doubting and believe.”
Thomas said to him, “My Lord and my God!”
Then Jesus told him, “Because you have seen me, you have believed; blessed are those who have not seen and yet have believed.”
John 20: 24-29

 
Evidently, Jesus and God see it as intrinsically better to believe without having seen the entire proof (i.e. faith), versus only believing after all other avenues are locked (i.e. observation).  It is true that an act of deductive reason is a total no-brainer compared to an act of faith.

 
The other part of why God doesn't reveal himself more easily has to do with us.  In his book "Mere Christianity", C.S. Lewis argues that God is unlikely to reveal himself to someone who is not disposed to listen to the truth.  He states the argument thus in "Mere Christianity" Book 4 Chapter 2 "The Three-Personal God": 
."...in fact, He shows much more of Himself to some people than others - not because He has favourites, but because it is impossible for Him to show Himself to a man whose whole mind and character are in the wrong condition.  Just as sunlight, though it has no favourites, cannot be reflected in a dusty mirror as clearly as in a clean one. 
You can put this another way by saying that while in other sciences the instruments you use are things external to yourself (things like microscopes and telescopes), the instrument through which you see God is your whole self.  And if a man's self is not kept clean and bright, his glimpse of God will be blurred - like the Moon seen through a dirty telescope."
Here C.S. Lewis is arguing that God can and will reveal himself to anyone, but it is ultimately up to the person how much and how accurately they view God.  However, it is also important to consider the apostle Paul's experience with God.  God spoke to him at a time when Paul was persecuting Christians.  Paul stopped and listened (and subsequently spread God's news far and wide), but would C.S. Lewis have said that Paul was keeping himself clean and bright at the period in time when he first heard God?  It's an interesting question, and not one I will attempt to answer. 

 
Suffice to say that we all have the opportunity to see God, no matter who we are, where we live, or what we do.  Our own view of him may be wrongly interpreted by us, but if we listen and are truly seeking the truth, God will give us guidance.  Not easily, and maybe not in the way we expect, but he will help us find Him.

“Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives; the one who seeks finds; and to the one who knocks, the door will be opened.
Which of you, if your son asks for bread, will give him a stone?
Matthew 7:7-9

 
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