I love words.
I like to read words – particularly those that are eloquently written with a twist of paradox that leave me mulling over them for days.
I like to hear words – especially when they are spoken with an Australian accent. (Seriously, who can resist that Down Under inflection? Sigh.)
I like to write words – and prefer penning my thoughts versus simply speaking them, mostly because there is that wonderful invention known as the “delete” button. (I’m convinced that particular key was created for people like me. It’s so much easier to press a button than extract a foot from my mouth.)
Perhaps it is this love for words that makes me so – dare I say, irritated – when I perceive that God is refusing to speak. After all, He is the One who created me with this propensity toward words, and then when I so want Him to speak to me, He manifests His rights to remain silent.
Or does He?
Recently, I’ve been reminded of the fact that it is not so much that God is silent as it is that my ears are deafened. I mean, seriously, if I was in tune with all that is happening in the spiritual realm, my senses would be blown away. Can you imagine the roar of angels wings whisking by or the clang of heavenly swords clashing in battle above your head? How on earth can we expect these finite bodies to do anything but disintegrate if we would hear the Voice that thunders in such a way that entire universes are brought into existence with a word? How can we bear the conversation of a God whose mere breath births life into the deadness of soil and raises it into the scope of humankind? Maybe it’s best that we hear just the whispers of His movements.
Because that alone is enough to undo me.
And yet, I still long to be reminded of His presence. To know that I am not alone. That He is real. That He is near. That He has not abandoned me or my loved ones to these pressing trials that are threatening to consume us. “Speak, Lord!” my heart cries. And then I strain my ears to hear… while covering them at the same time.
What will I do if His answer is not the one I want to hear?
What if His path of deliverance walks me directly into the path of the storm I prefer to avoid?
Will I still trust Him when His way leads through the whirlwind?
When suffering is a companion on the journey?
When grief becomes an unwelcome bedfellow?
Will I trust God when He appears to be silent, even when in my heart of hearts I believe that He is not?
Because the truth of the matter is: Contrary to all appearances, God is not silent. Despite our misconceptions that God is inactive, He is moving. Forming strategies to align in perfect precision with His divine providence. Moving piece after piece into play in order to declare the ultimate “checkmate” on the enemy of our souls. Sometimes this means allowing Satan to buffet His Beloved for a season, but never to the point of extinction. Never to a place where death is beyond His power to raise again to eternal life.
If you find yourself in company with me today in the place of small faith, let me remind you there is nothing that can rip a hole in the fabric of God’s protective covering of love.
If we are faithless, He remains faithful; He cannot deny Himself. (II Timothy 2:13)
God will never surrender Himself to be anything other than Who He is. He is loving. He is faithful. He is here. May we surrender our hearts to His keeping, and our loved ones to His care… even when He seems silent.