Prayerful RetreatHow often do you have a “prayerful retreat” with God?
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Silence of God
O Lord, how long will You forget me? Forever?
How long will You look the other way? (v.1).
She sits alone in her room—dark circles under her
eyes, tears running down her cheeks. Since her
teenage years, God has been her fulfillment, but
her heart still has gaps—empty places, hollow spaces,
unmet longings. And she has prayed, oh how she has
prayed for God to give her the desires of her heart. Or
to take them away. One or the other. But neither has
happened. Ten long years of waiting. “How long will
you forget me?” she whispers. “Forever?”
We may celebrate the goodness of God during times
of answered prayer and unexpected blessing, but sooner
or later, we all face the silence of God. Israel did (1 Sam.
3:1). Job did (Job 23:1-9). Asaph did—crying to God all
night without answer (Ps. 77:1-9). “Why do you hide when
I am in trouble?” David prayed (10:1). “Do not turn a deaf
ear to me,” he demanded (28:1). “How long must I struggle
with . . . sorrow in my heart every day?” he cried. “Turn
and answer me” (13:2-3). Even Jesus experienced the
deathly silence of the Father (Matt. 27:46).
What is God doing during His silence? Preparing
the answer to our request? Maybe. Testing the depth
of our devotion? Perhaps. Developing our character?
Undoubtedly. Christian martyrs of old were sawn in two
out of devotion to Jesus. Why shouldn’t we endure a little
pain as we mature? Sometimes, however, we may never
know why God is keeping quiet.
Thankfully, God does break His silence. He spoke to Israel (1 Samuel 3:4-14)
and Job (Job 38); the morning finally dawned for Asaph (Psalm 77:11-20) and
David (28:6-9); the silence of Good Friday was followed by the shout of Easter
But, until she hears from God, that girl—representing so many others—sits in
her room alone. Or is she? —Sheridan Voysey
Read Psalm 5:1-3. What
posture does David
suggest we take in the
midst of God’s silence?
How might Luke 18:6-8
as we wait?
Recall a period of God’s
silence in your life. How
did you grow through it?
How can you help others
who are experiencing the
silence of God? How will
you be God’s comfort as
Names of God by Laurell Hubick
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