Hello, God. Are you out there?
Hello, God. Are you out there? One of the more frustrating aspects of living life as a follower of God is that he is totally “other,” unlike anything or anyone we know, and we cannot adequately compare Him to any earthly standard. That’s probably a good thing in that we ought not worship a “super US,”but troubling to us of faith who would appreciate a standard for “holy” – “be holy because I am holy”(Lev. 11:45 ) and “good” – “there is only One who is good (Matt. 19:17) among other qualities.
A more common complaint I hear from people today is that when they need Him, God is silent. I’m not totally sure what people expect from God. I think we can pretty well be in agreement that unlike what we observe in many Old Testament writings, God is not doing much audibly with us today. Yet He is assuredly listening. Spoiler alert – God only listens to sinners so he’s always listening to you and me! We become unhinged about not “hearing” from God when we think He ought to speak. Get that? When we think He ought to speak . . . to us. Have you ever been to a counselor? There’s normally a lot of listening on that side of the “conversation” too. God is a wise counselor. He listens to every word. Every thought. Perhaps he is waiting to see what we do next in light of what we know or what He has already shown us.
Shown us already? I want to hear Him, you say! Has he not spoken to us? Yes, He does speak to us through His Spirit by impressions and maybe the lucky ones do at times hear something audibly. Sometimes God speaks to us through others. He’s been known to work through prophetic utterance.“In the past God spoke to our ancestors through the prophets at many times and in various ways, but in these last days he has spoken to us by his Son.” (Heb. 1:1-2) This passage gives us assurance that he made himself and his word known through Jesus, who walked with and talked with men some 2000 years ago. It is too bad that we missed that, isn’t it?
Do we conclude God is now pretty much silent? Hold on! God spoke! He prepared a life manual for you and me that answers all we need to know about life and living it. We are just some years removed from when the original “speaking” took place. But God did speak to you and me. And it was recorded. And we do have a faithful record of it. And it is useful to answer our questions and break the “so-called” silence from God we might at times sense. Note the underlining. “All scripture is God-breathed and useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, so that the servant of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work.” (2Tim. 3:16) Is the problem with God’s silence or could it be our ignorance or apathy?
God is sometimes quiet and we need to seek Him out, but He is never silent and His word is not dead wood. When He appears to be silent, He has a reason. Perhaps God waits for our desire for Him to be ignited. That “desire” is His gift to us. God tells us His word is alive and useful. Note the underlines.“For the word of God is alive and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even todividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart.” Wow! It does all that?
The answers are there if we seek them out. God will talk through his word when we inquire, usually not revealing too much in advance. God said so in Psalm 119:105 “Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path.” A lamp, he says, not a floodlight. You Think About It.