The long road-when God seems distance
Each day, I try to spend time in prayer reading the word of God. Sometimes as I mediate on God and his word, my heart bounds as his words leap from the pages of the bible, teaching me, and uplifting me while giving me the strength to keep going. Other times, for long periods, it is as if I am reading a regular book, nothing happens as I read.
So easily, did I give up at one time. I did not listen to the Holy Spirit, or give him chance to direct me? Those times I call the dry times. When those, seemingly, dry times came to me, it was as if a part of me thought God was alienated form me. Religion taught me that he wants me to suffer, and when my pain gets really bad then he would help.
I also remember in those dry times, I took my life back into my own hands, and did the things I felt were required to help God along. If God were not listening, then I would have to do it myself. Of course, most of time, I ended up doing something contrary to his will, and it ended up not as I expected. Once, God told me to stand still, but since he was not moving, I needed to. I moved from one city to another. This small move changed my life drastically; I found the pleasures of the world. My entire life changed; it all looked good on the outside, but for years, slowly my actual happiness and contentment declined.
Nevertheless, God in his goodness was always there waiting for me; and when I was ready, he picked me back up and started steering back on the path he had for me. His call on my life, love, and grace, will never leave me; and it will never leave you. Romans 11:29 (ESV) 29 “For the gifts and the calling of God are irrevocable.”
When conviction over my past comes against me now, I wonder how God could have been so patient with me, still love me, and want to help me live a good life; full of health and happiness. He waited tolerantly for me to return. How could God love someone like me? I read the Old Testament, and I am sure they probably would have stoned me, heheh.
One day while I put myself down, telling myself that I am unworthy of his of his love or his help, the Holy Spirit brought to my remembrance two things. God is love, and he loved you and me from the beginning. That is why he came down in flesh as Jesus to die for you and me. A want to share a very familiar verse; John 3:16-17 (KJV) 16 For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life. 17 For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved.”
Secondly, he reminded me of a man in the bible that loved God. Like me, and you, he was not perfect. Although this man knew God’s destiny for his life, and God had blessed him greatly, he still made a huge mistake. This man had everything that many today desire; wealth, power, and love from those around him, but his fallen human nature took over. He took another man’s wife, and after getting her pregnant, he killed her husband to keep his little mishap a secret. Of course, many of you know that I am talking about King David. A king of the people of Israel in the Old Testament of the bible; having so much prosperity, rest from his enemies, and no battles to fight, I guess he grew bored; (David had many wives and concubines, he did not lack physical companionship.)
I do like King David because he loved God though. He fell to his knees and begged forgiveness when the prophet rebuked him; he did not try to make any excuses, and most importantly, he did not live in his conviction and turn away from God. Although, there were consequences because of what he did, he was still loved greatly by God and lived a long prosperous life. David understood he was wrong, and from his actions, I realize that there are no excuses needed to please God; he knows everything already. Jesus paid the ultimate price; now I can ask for forgiveness, and move back on the right path.
Like David, sometimes there are unfavorable consequences, but also like David, God used my own pigheadedness for my good; whether to teach me something, or even he will even make it part of my blessing. If you remember, Solomon, one of the wisest kings of Israel, was the son of the woman, he took, and whose husband he killed. 1st Kings 15:4-6 says, “Nevertheless for David’s sake did the LORD his God give him a lamp in Jerusalem, to set up his son after him, and to establish Jerusalem: 5 Because David did that which was right in the eyes of the LORD, and turned not aside from anything that he commanded him all the days of his life, save only in the matter of Uriah the Hittite.”
I know God’s love and patience is true; I have experienced it in my own personal life. God is good, and regardless, he is always there gently nudging me to get me to where he wants me. Now, in those times I consider dry, I remember that God is still with me and he is working in my life; although it may not feel like it. The times he gives me to be alone, is also part of his great love; he is not pushy. He gently guides me in the direction he wants for my life, and he will guide you too, if you trust in him. Romans 8: 28 tells me, “And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose.”