Breaking the Silence

I have been blogless lately because I have been wordless. I have been struggling with what to say and how to say it, and no matter how hard I tried, God would not give me the words. Anytime I write anything worth reading on here, it is from the Lord. That may sound prideful, but I mean it in the humblest of ways. I have no talent or ability to write anything of value without God showing it to me, from the smallest, silly details of life to the lessons God is showing me through His Word. It was the Lord who prompted me to start this blog, and it is Him who gives me words to write. He has broken His silence, and now so will I.

I sat down a couple nights ago to post on what He's been dealing with me about. I wrote many paragraphs, then just got up and went to bed, frustrated and dissatisfied. It turns out, the lesson was not finished, so it was not ready to share.

Through the holidays, I found myself in one of those pesky spiritual deserts that come along from time to time. I had been reading my Bible and praying, but it was just one of those times of silence from God's end. It seemed that my constant goal of focusing on eternal things was hard to accomplish, because I just couldn't manage to see or hear God at all. I was even becoming vulnerable to the lies and doubts that creep up in my life from time to time and found myself in a battle for my faith...maybe not as desperate as it sounds, but I was longing for the nearness of God.

During this time, I picked up a book again that I have slowly been reading through, The Attributes of God by A.W. Tozer. (By the way, Tozer rocks in my opinion. I know, I'm not cool enough to use the phrase "somebody rocks" without sounding like a total dork.) In reading about God's omnipresence and His immenence, I found myself pondering the question, "Why do we constantly speak of being near to or far from a God Who is everywhere and in all things?" But Tozer brought an illustration to life for me that I've really been mulling over.

Before we were believers, we were totally in the dark, without the Light of God and the life it brings. We lived in Antarctica in the winter...never seeing the sun. (Okay, please tell me that that is scientifically and geographically accurate. Or, if it's not, just pretend that it is.) Then, that miracle of salvation occurs, and we are reconciled to God and made enough like Him that we can fellowship with Him and know Him. It's as though we've seen the sun in its bright glory and felt its heat for the first time. We are elated. But, for many of us, it seems that we've only moved to Seattle. We benefit from the sun's light and warmth to a degree and we know the sun is just behind the clouds, but it is still blocked. A thick layer of gloomy clouds characterizes the weather on most of our days. We know we should be living as people on the sunny Hawaiian beach, but we are living Christian lives characterized as much by frustration, worry, and even depression as joy and peace.

So, why are we not experiencing the joyous light of God? Why do we feel far from a God who indwells us? Sin, of course. We continue to live such carnal, sin-filled lives that we cannot have consistent, unbroken fellowship with Christ. We are still too much unlike Him to truly experience Him fully. The clouds of sin are blocking out our sun. This takes me to the other book I'm reading, Brokenness by Nancy Leigh deMoss. She's not quite as deep as Tozer, but she makes a simple point. To experience revival and God's manifest presence in our lives, we must be broken.

All of this has lead me to ask God to examine my heart and begin to rid me of the sin that I've allowed to hang out there for so long. I have lightly dismissed so many areas of disobedience, it's no wonder that I don't feel close to the Holy God Almighty. So, as He always does, He showed me one area of disobedience this past weekend. I can say that, as of this morning, I put aside my own will for His and finally obeyed. I cannot state enough the fact that nothing brings a clearer view and a more obvious feeling of the presence of God than brokenness and obedience. He shows Himself, not to those who bring sacrifices and half-heartedness, but to those who are humble, contrite, broken, and obedient.

I have seen with such clarity the evidence of His existence, His hand at work, His goodness, and His personal love for me and others today in a way that I haven't seen those things in a very long time. I have seen so many details, many seemingly unrelated, of the past days, months, and years come together for good and His glory. Obedience brings blessing. I have heard that so many times over the years, but it is true. Not necessarily earthly, spiritual ones, but blessings that really mean something. Blessings that will last forever. Namely, His Presence in a very real way. What greater blessing could there be?

My desire and prayer is to radiate the glory of God in my life. But it is impossible for a mirror to truly radiate the sun's brilliance on a cloudy day. Similarly, it is impossible for us as believers to radiate the presence and glory of God when sin is between us and Him. I'm sure there will be many more sins revealed in my life in the coming days, but I pray that my desire to know His presence and reflect His glory leads me to continued brokenness and obedience before the Lover of My Soul.

I sought the Lord, and he answered me; he delivered me from all my fears. Those who look to him are radiant; their faces are never covered with shame. Psalm 34:4-5


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