Day 14 – When God seems Distant

Isaiah 8:17
And I will wait on the Lord, Who hides His face from the house of Jacob; And I will hope in Him.

The deepest level of worship is praising God in spite of pain, thanking God during a trial, trusting him when tempted, surrendering while suffering, and loving him when he seems distant.
To mature your friendship, God will test it with periods of seeming separation – time when it feels as if he has abandoned or forgotten you.

1 Samuel 13:14
But now your kingdom shall not continue. The Lord has sought for Himself a man after His own heart, and the Lord has commanded him to be commander over His people, because you have not kept what the Lord commanded you.”
Acts 13:22
And when He had removed him, He raised up for them David as king, to whom also He gave testimony and said, ‘I have found David the son of Jesse, a man after My own heart, who will do all My will.’
Psalm 10:1
Why do You stand afar off, O Lord? Why do You hide in times of trouble?
Psalm 22:1
My God, My God, why have You forsaken Me? Why are You so far from helping Me, And from the words of My groaning?
Psalm 43:2
For You are the God of my strength; Why do You cast me off? Why do I go mourning because of the oppression of the enemy?
Psalm 44:23
Awake! Why do You sleep, O Lord? Arise! Do not cast us off forever.
Psalm 74:11
Why do You withdraw Your hand, even Your right hand? Take it out of Your bosom and destroy them.
Psalm 88:14 (msg)
Why, GOD, do you turn a deaf ear? Why do you make yourself scarce?
Psalm 89:49
Lord, where are Your former lovingkindnesses, Which You swore to David in Your truth?

God hadn’t really left David, and he doesn’t leave you.

Deuteronomy 31:8
And the Lord, He is the One who goes before you. He will be with you, He will not leave you nor forsake you; do not fear nor be dismayed.”
Psalm 37:28
For the Lord loves justice, And does not forsake His saints; They are preserved forever, But the descendants of the wicked shall be cut off.
John 14:16-18
And I will pray the Father, and He will give you another Helper, that He may abide with you forever— 17 the Spirit of truth, whom the world cannot receive, because it neither sees Him nor knows Him; but you know Him, for He dwells with you and will be in you. 18 I will not leave you orphans; I will come to you.
Hebrews 13:5
Let your conduct be without covetousness; be content with such things as you have. For He Himself has said, “I will never leave you nor forsake you.”

God admits that sometimes he hides his face from us.

Isaiah 45:15
Truly You are God, who hide Yourself, O God of Israel, the Savior!

This is a normal part of the testing and maturing of your friendship with God. Every Christian goes through it at least once, and usually several times. It is painful and disconcerting, but it is absolutely vital for the development of your faith.

Job 23:8-10
“Look, I go forward, but He is not there, And backward, but I cannot perceive Him; When He works on the left hand, I cannot behold Him; When He turns to the right hand, I cannot see Him. 10 But He knows the way that I take; When He has tested me, I shall come forth as gold.”
Psalm 51
Ephesians 4:29-30
Let no corrupt word proceed out of your mouth, but what is good for necessary edification, that it may impart grace to the hearers. 30 And do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, by whom you were sealed for the day of redemption.
1 Thessalonians 5:19
Do not quench the Spirit.
Jeremiah 2:32
Can a virgin forget her ornaments, Or a bride her attire? Yet My people have forgotten Me days without number.
1 Corinthians 8:12
But when you thus sin against the brethren, and wound their weak conscience, you sin against Christ.
James 4:4
Adulterers and adulteresses! Do you not know that friendship with the world is enmity with God? Whoever therefore wants to be a friend of the world makes himself an enemy of God.

Seeking a feeling, even the feeling of closeness to Christ, is not worship.
God’s omnipresence and the manifestation of his presence are two different things. One is a fact; the other is often a feeling. He wants you to sense his presence, but he’s more concerned that you trust him than that you feel him. Faith, not feelings, pleases God.

Job 1:20-21
Then Job arose, tore his robe, and shaved his head; and he fell to the ground and worshiped. 21 And he said:
“Naked I came from my mother’s womb, And naked shall I return there. The Lord gave, and the Lord has taken away; Blessed be the name of the Lord.”

Tell God exactly how you feel

Pour out to God

Job 7:11
“Therefore I will not restrain my mouth; I will speak in the anguish of my spirit; I will complain in the bitterness of my soul.”
Job 29:4
Just as I was in the days of my prime, When the friendly counsel of God was over my tent
Psalm 116:10
I believed, therefore I spoke, “I am greatly afflicted.”

First, he believed in God. Second, he believed God would listen to his prayer. Third, he believed God would let him say what he felt and still love him.

Focus on who God is – his unchanging nature

Remind yourself what you know to be eternally true about God

Job 10:12
You have granted me life and favor, And Your care has preserved my spirit.
Job 42:2
I know that You can do everything, And that no purpose of Yours can be withheld from You.
Job 37:5
God thunders marvelously with His voice; He does great things which we cannot comprehend.
Job 37:23
As for the Almighty, we cannot find Him; He is excellent in power, In judgment and abundant justice; He does not oppress.
Job 23:10
But He knows the way that I take; When He has tested me, I shall come forth as gold.
Job 31:4
Does He not see my ways, And count all my steps?
Job 34:13
Who gave Him charge over the earth? Or who appointed Him over the whole world?
Job 23:14
For He performs what is appointed for me, And many such things are with Him.
Job 19:25
For I know that my Redeemer lives, And He shall stand at last on the earth

Trust God to Keep his Promises

A friendship based on emotion is shallow indeed

Job 23:12
I have not departed from the commandment of His lips; I have treasured the words of His mouth More than my necessary food.

This trust in God’s Word caused Job to remain faithful even though nothing made sense.

Job 13:15
Though He slay me, yet will I trust Him. Even so, I will defend my own ways before Him.

Remember What God has Already Done for You

2 Corinthians 5:21
For He made Him who knew no sin to be sin for us, that we might become the righteousness of God in Him.

Never again should you wonder what you have to be thankful for

Point to Ponder: God is real, no matter how I feel
Verse to Remember: Hebrews 13:5 – Let your conduct be without covetousness; be content with such things as you have. For He Himself has said, “I will never leave you nor forsake you.”
Question to Consider: How can I stay focused on God’s presence, especially when he feels distant?

Worship, praise, never give up in prayer, talk to him through spirit. Talk to him while in the shower, doing chores, and other activities.

 

Day 1 – It’s Not About Me
Day 2 – You are Not An Accident
Day 3 – What Drives Your Life
Day 4 – Made to Last Forever
Day 5 – Life from God’s View
Day 6 – Life is a Temporary Assignment
Day 7 – The Reason for Everything
Day 8 – Planned For God’s Pleasure
Day 9 – What Makes God Smile

Day 10 – The Heart of Worship
Day 11 – Becoming Best Friends with God

Day 12 – Developing Your Friendship with God
Day 13 – Worship That Pleases God

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4 Comments

  1. Celestina Hannah.

     /  January 15, 2013

    Thank You, I Appreciate This. It Has Really Blessed Me.

    Reply
  1. Day 16 – What Matters Most « We're Jumpin
  2. Day 15 – Formed for God’s Family « We're Jumpin

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