How do you maintain a fervent love for God when you feel God has let you down. What do you do when you feel God has treated you unfairly, left you unprotected, undefended or abandoned? How do you respond to the seeds that lie within you questioning His love and your lack?
How do you keep the pursuit of God the main thing when you feel that the One you’re in pursuit of has, in someway, short-changed you and left you hanging out to dry? It’s not easy.
I have to admit, been there, done that.
The Life of David
The life of David encourages me. In many ways David faced the very same things I am talking about here. His life as a man after God’s own heart is filled with seasons of abandonment, unmet expectations and unanswered prayers.
Psalm 13:1 “How long, O LORD? Will you forget me forever? How long will you hide your face from me?”
Psalm 69:1-3 “Save me, O God, for the waters have come up to my neck. I sink in the miry depths, where there is no foothold. I have come into the deep waters; the floods engulf me. I am worn out calling for help; my throat is parched. My eyes fail, looking for my God.
Ever felt like this?
Even though David’s prayers are bold and brutally honest, he never allows his lack nor his circumstances to derail his love and pursuit of God. This is key.
Here are just two responses David gives when things go bad.
Psalm 13:5-6 “But I trust in your unfailing love; my heart rejoices in your salvation.I will sing to the LORD, for he has been good to me.”
Psalm 69:30 “I will praise God’s name in song and glorify him with thanksgiving.”
Personally, in the midst of my disappointment I find strength to do one thing: I look for an occasion to give thanks to the Lord and do it. Why? Giving thanks shifts the atmosphere in my heart.
Initially it’s hard, but the more I give thanks the more my mind is renewed and my spirit is refreshed. His love fills my heart and hope and faith are activated. This is exactly what David did.
Here are a few other things I do when I am struggling in this area.
- I hold fast to knowing that God is love and God is good. I must hold on to these two convictions in every circumstance I face in life. His thoughts and ways are higher than mine. I trust who He is and know that He does all things well. His goal is to conform me into the image of Jesus not merely to make me feel good.
- I continue to worship through my lack of understanding. There really is no other way around it. I display the depths of my love in the place of greatest suffering. Whether I sense injustice or not, I will praise Him.
- I am real with God, honorably. I have learned to go to the Lord and put my thoughts and feelings on the table. I do so with the picture of a Heavenly Father who loves and cares for me.
- I embrace the pain to grow. While facing the circumstance I embrace the pain and try to squeeze every drop out of it to gain greater wisdom and revelation. I want to learn more about God and more about myself. I want the pain to make me not break me.
Yes, it is possible to grow in your passion for God when you feel like He has left you behind. Your greatest reward is to thank Him in your weakest moment. To worship God when we don’t understand is the supreme offering we give this side of heaven.
Question: Love to get your thoughts on this. Agree or disagree? Share your own experience or what you have observed.