This post is continued from last week’s post describing some undeniable facts of spiritual deserts. These are experiences when God puts us in tough places and we feel God is absent. A sick child, a sinking marriage, scandal and shame – urgent but unanswered prayers.
Why on earth would our Lord allow such things?
What is the purpose behind His children being deserted?
Credit -.craig, https://www.flickr.com/photos/anabadili/6137924233
Will we ever find God’s love in a spiritual desert?
Continuing to look at Paul Miller’s book, “A Praying Life”, he notes that “God takes everyone he loves through a desert. He does this to kill our idols, drive us to helplessness, and help us realize only HE can be our hope and joy.”
This leads us to the next question – how can we respond best in a seemingly hopeless situation where our spiritual life becomes dry and apparently of no use?
What do we remember so that we don’t give up or faint in this barren land?
Miller suggests that we remember three things:
(1) Don’t demand that the story go your way;
(2) Look for His hand [at work], and then pray in light of what you are seeing; and
(3) Stay in the story; don’t shut down when it goes the ‘wrong’ way. The examples of Job, Joseph & our Lord Jesus in the Bible show how they clung on to God almighty all through the gruesome times.
As we saw last week, prayer is integral to a Christian’s life during spiritual deserts. But as Miller says, “When we don’t receive what we pray for or desire, it doesn’t mean that God isn’t acting on our behalf. Rather, he’s weaving his story”.
God desires us to see Him at work, and to marvel at His goodness and grace, and learn to know and trust Him more in the process.
What do you do to keep hope in God alive during spiritual deserts? Feel free to leave your story below.