Presence Devotion #11
The Long Silence
David Breen – General Manager of Training, Discovery Community Care
Isaiah 57: 11-13
Is it not because I have been long silent that you do not fear me?… but the man (woman) who makes me his refuge will inherit the land and possess my holy mountain.
Do you know anyone who has said, “I have tried so many times to hear God and to spend time in his presence but nothing seems to happen. Is there something wrong with me?”
For some people being alone with God to hear his voice is a real challenge that is very frustrating. Feelings of guilt or shame can rise within because they are not able to hear or get ‘words from God’ and they feel less of a Christian. Let me say up front; NO ONE is less a Christian because they can or cannot hear from God. Our faith and our eternal salvation are based entirely on the fact Jesus Christ, God’s son, who was crucified in our place and rose again to life. It is not based on our ability to hear from God. However, issues may be affecting us that make it difficult for us to draw near to God and hear from him. Let me explain.
Our world affects our lives and spirits – what we are today is the sum of our previous experiences and culture. Our family upbringing, our education and the negative impact of others – especially the important others – will impact on how we relate to Father God. If we have an underlying belief God is a harsh and unforgiving it will be difficult for us to move close to him and hear his words of encouragement and comfort. No wonder you think it hard to hear from him – your inner self is blocking Him.
Our passage today suggests that God is long time silent, thus causing us to not fear (respect) God. However, verse 13 suggests that making God our refuge will in fact cause us to inherit the holy place (i.e. the presence of God). Don’t run from God because you can’t hear him, run to him. Cry out to him to show you what is deep within you that you can’t see and he can, so you can be freed from the pain that hinders you from being close and hearing his words of love and affirmation.
- What was your relationship like with your father? Did he represent a loving God to you?
- Do you need to deal with any past trauma that may be still affecting you?
- Who can you go to for prayer ministry to assist you to find freedom from the effect of the past?
Heavenly Father, I want to come close to you but it seems like a wall stands in my way. Please help me to see what it is and to find freedom so I can be close to you and hear your words of life.