Have you ever been to a desert?
I haven’t, but I’m a writer so I can imagine. Dusty, dry, lonely. Deserts hold scorching daytime heat and miles upon miles of dust, sand, and more sand. You don’t typically find water in the desert. Sometimes when I envision this picture I think this must be an accurate representation of when God feels distant.
Dry, lonely, longing.
Because sometimes…sometimes He just feels so far away.
How then do you pray when it feels like He does not hear?
How do you have the courage to keep serving Him when He doesn’t feel near? I am certainly not an expert on this, but I have learned a thing or two along the way in my own seasons of spiritual “deserts.”
Persevere in prayer.
The very meaning behind persevere is to keep going, even when it seems hard. To never give up and never quit. A lot of times in life you don’t always get the results you’re looking for right away. As a writer, I am well-acquainted with the term, “never give up.” I received eleven rejections before receiving my first acceptance to guest post on a popular teen blog. Even after that I still receive rejections and I’m sure I’ll continue to receive them in the future. The rejections aren’t what matters. What matters is how I handle them. How I keep pressing on in spite of the rejections and things not going how I first imagined.
If you feel God is distant, but praying hasn’t helped, keep praying. Be consistent and pray like your life depends on it. Your feelings may not change overnight, but perseverance and consistency will pay off in the end.
Confess sins in prayer.
A lot of times the distance we feel with God was created by us and our sin. Sin puts distance between you and God. If you have any sin in your life that has not been confessed, go to God in prayer and confess it today. You cannot afford to lose another precious minute before turning from your sin and turning your face back to your Creator. Confess where you have been wrong. Repent and praise Him for His mercy to forgive you.
Be honest in prayer.
Sometimes we think that if we feel distant from God or even angry at God for some reason, we should bury it and not tell Him. Friend, He already knows. He knows every word before you speak it. Every thought before you think it. You cannot hide anything from Him. So stop trying. Be honest with God in prayer about your emotions.
Don’t be afraid to tell Him how you feel. A perfect example of this is the Psalmist David. If you read through portions of the Psalms you’ll quickly see how honest David was in his prayers to the Lord.
Just don’t forget: feelings lie. Feelings are not always truth. Sometimes our feelings will lie to us about who we are or who God is. But feelings are just feelings. If you admit that the lies your feelings are telling you right now about God are not true, then they do not have any authority over you.
Even the greatest of theologians and Christians have experienced spiritual dry seasons. Seasons where God felt distant and the desert felt long. Don’t be afraid. God will never leave you nor forsake you (Hebrews 13:5). And no matter what your feelings tell you, He walks with you through every desert.
Don’t give up.
~ Guest Post by Isabella ~
Isabella Morganthal (20) is a writer, dreamer, and child of God. She is the published
author of five books and runs her own magazine ministry. She’d love to connect with you at: www.isabellamorganthal.weebly.com.