Skip to main content

When you feel like God has forgotten you

How long, Lord? Will you forget me forever?
How long will you forget me, LORD? Forever?
Long enough, God— you've ignored me long enough.

How long will you hide your face from me?
I've looked at the back of your head long enough. Long enough.
Will it be forever? How long will you hide?

Psalm 13:1 (TNIV, CEB, MSG, & CEV)

Does your waiting seem forever, like it is never going to end?

Bob Sorge shares many helpful insights in his book, "The Fire of Delayed Answers: are you waiting for your prayers to be answered?" The book boils down to this statement, "Sometimes God delays the answers to our prayers to produce a greater maturity and fruitfulness in us."1

Four times, in Psalm 13, David says, "How long?" The delay has been long enough that it's begun to irritate, begun to seem too long for the soul. When we wait, a dying occurs in us. Things come out of our hands and are layed down and offered as sacrifice. We thought we were walking with God closely, but when God seems distant, when God delays coming, when the old ways don't work anymore; there then has to be a breaking, a death. In that brokenness process and death to self process, we end up with God only and we end up in God only.

When we are finally done with misconceiving God, of accusing him, of being mad, of pouting; we come back to simple trust in God, who is unfailingly loving. We also come down to the simple and solid theology of God is good. Yes, it feels like and looks like God is failing, but that's not true. Looks and feels like God is not good, but God is good. These are affirmatives, but not just affirmations. They are eternal forever truths.

The cry of "how long" is from the middle of something. The end may be death and release from a sick body. The end may be deliverance or healing. The end may be the answer. But, the "how long" cry comes in the middle of a process that God is watching over. Many Psalms and just out and out full on praise anthems, but many other Psalms are process songs and poems: open-hearted laments.

No matter where we are in our journey, with the exception of the 1% that are at the beginning or end, we are all in the middle. We never get to the point where we complete a 'level', then say to God, "thanks, I'll take it from here."

1. Ryan Jones, Fire Of Delayed Answers study guide. Available in Word or PDF.


Popular posts from this blog

The Two Disciples and The Two Donkeys

When they approached Jerusalem and came to Bethphage on the Mount of Olives, Jesus gave two disciples a task.  He said to them, “Go into the village over there. As soon as you enter, you will find a donkey tied up and a colt with it. Untie them and bring them to me.  If anybody says anything to you, say that the Lord needs it.” He sent them off right away.  Now this happened to fulfill what the prophet said,  Say to Daughter Zion, “Look, your king is coming to you, humble and riding on a donkey, and on a colt the donkey’s offspring.”  The disciples went and did just as Jesus had ordered them.  They brought the donkey and the colt and laid their clothes on them. Then he sat on them.
-Matthew 21:1-7

On what we call Palm Sunday, Jesus rode a donkey into Jerusalem. But, he had two disciples get two donkeys: a mother donkey and her colt. Jesus rode the young male who had never been ridden before. In his carefulness and perhaps kindness towards these two donkeys, he had th…

Teaching vs. Indoctrination

As usual, Paul went to the synagogue, and on three Sabbath days reasoned with them from the Scriptures.
-Acts 17:2

There is a difference between teaching and indoctrination.  Education is not indoctrination.  But some secular and christian education is indoctrination masquerading as education.

If you are a teacher, whether you homeschool your children, teach at the pro level or you teach in your church; it is good to know this difference between indoctrination and true teaching.  Many people are indoctrinated today, rather than taught.

What you might notice, is that when you preach, whether you preach to a crowd or a few, it is easy to be an indoctrinator rather than a true teacher.  True teachers ask people questions and expect them to challenge and debate them.


Sharing ideas and conceptsTeaching is absorbed and integrated into one's own lifeConcepts or ideas are questioned and debatedMaterial is reflected uponStudents summarize back what's being learnedStudents thin…

God's Secret, Hidden People

(The children) of Elam 1,254.  -Ezra 2:7

Do you feel hidden?

The name Elam means secret or hidden.  Do you feel like you are on the shelf, not being used by God?  Maybe you are part of God's secret agents.

God has people who are in secret.

I have this idea that God has His attention on secret people.   I believe that God has rewards for secret people coming.  You may feel on the shelf, but you are actually hidden for a special purpose.  God has you in reserve.

The number one thousand, two-hundred, and fifty-four; tells us God's plan for his hidden, secret, and in reserve children

One thousand speaks of recompense.

Recompense means that you will be compensated or made amends to, due to harm or loss you suffered. In Genesis 20:16 is the story of Abimelech recompensing Abraham and Sarah.

Two speaks of fellowship, partnership, and co-laboring (Ecclesiastes 4:9-12).

There are hidden people who have felt like they are "going it alone", who are about to be joined by someone.  …