To know the mind of God, we have to learn how to discern the voice of God. Lately, this is something that I have had a real hard time doing. For me, this is normally a sign that I’m doing too much and I’m going too fast. When we slow down to actually see what God thinks, it is amazing how much more peace we have. Rarely, will we have to go through a period where God remains silent, but what do we do when this happens?
This is something that has really been on my heart lately and I’m going to be real honest, it’s something that is harder to write about since it’s going on right now. It’s a lot easier to talk about things once we’ve already walked them out, so I’m going to be as transparent as possible. When we are calling out to God for direction, peace, or any of the other trillion reasons we call out to Him and we hear nothing; it feels incredibly lonely? I know beyond a shadow of a doubt that I am doing exactly what God is calling me to do, that is what makes it even harder. It has taken me years to discern the voice of God and I still miss it from time-to-time and there are still times, like the present, where He seems to be absent. It is in these times that our faith and trust in God are truly tested. I heard today that God uses impossible people to accomplish impossible tasks by crushing them. That is what it feels like when you are living your life doing what God has called you to do, yet when you call out to Him, there is only silence.
I have had to guard myself from becoming bitter and from letting my joy be taken during this period of silence. When you call out to God and there is only silence, it feels like God is shouting back, “I’m not here” only by His lack of response. Someone recently reminded me that the joy of the Lord is my strength and hearing this came at the perfect time because I could literally feel my joy being stolen and I know the enemy wants nothing more than for us to lose our joy because when we do, it makes us more vulnerable to spiritual attacks. So, I offer you the same encouragement I am giving myself: this too shall pass. God gives us joy so that we can have the strength to face any adversity. Even in His silence, He is accomplishing more than we can ever fathom. We can’t make it through times of testing without joy, so I want to encourage you to thank God even His silence. Trust that even if you can’t hear Him now that He will neither leave nor forsake you and that you are loved and cherished by Him. As a new father, I can’t imagine not responding to my daughter when she cries out to me, so I know it pains God to see us feel forsaken by His silence. He alone knows what is best for us and if that includes silence, even in the midst of a violent storm, I trust in Him and I pray that you have the faith and assurance to do the same.