One Essential Truth When God Seems Silent

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Woman Reading the Bible.
Close-up of woman’s hands while reading the Bible outside.

It is what it is. I hear people quote this all the time. I say it myself.

And sometimes we just need to accept what is.

Other times though, most of the time, we need to hope for more.

We need to believe that there is a reason behind what is happening. We plead that somehow there might be purpose in the midst of the chaos or triumph at the end of our tragedy.

What is isn’t good enough. It isn’t just or fair or right.

So we cry out to God. We seek an answer. We want Him to make sense of the suffering or deliver some boundaries to our unknowns.

And He seems silent.

Why?

I came across this verse Jesus said right before He died:

I still have many things to tell you, but you can’t handle them now (John 16:12)

I began to wonder: What is it that Jesus wants to tell me, but I just can’t bear to hear it? 

And if there’s something He can’t yet say to me, how do I prepare myself to hear Him?

Then Jesus continued:

But when the Friend comes, the Spirit of the Truth, he will take you by the hand and guide you into all the truth there is. He won’t draw attention to himself, but will make sense out of what is about to happen and, indeed, out of all that I have done and said. He will honor me; he will take from me and deliver it to you (John 16:13-15).

So, there’s more than just listening. There’s more than just being willing to listen; there’s walking with the Spirit. I have to take His hand and go with Him. And He won’t make a big fanfare out of it, He’ll just remind me Who Jesus Is. He won’t tell me Who He Is, He’ll remind me. Which means I have to get into the gospels and start reading about everything Jesus said and did.

Meanwhile, I can hold on to the promise that He has all of Jesus at His disposal and will give me everything I need of Him: His grace, His mercy, His peace, His truth, His power and His wisdom.

That sounds like a pretty good deal in return. I open my Bible, follow the Spirit’s leading through the pages and He gives me all the Jesus that I need.

And when I’m ready, He will speak.

He will make it all make sense.

I can hear the groans. I’ve been where you are. So broken you can’t even lift your face off the floor, let alone take a step or even get to your knees. And at those times I think about the paralytic, who had four friends who took him to Jesus. Because there was no way he was going to make it there himself. 

And if that’s you, friend, ask for help. Sometimes we just need somebody to carry us. But whether we come crawling on our hands and knees, marching boldly to the throne of grace, or we are in a lump on a mat being carried by friends, our only hope is Jesus.

And until we take the Spirit’s hand, He will not speak.

So open up the Scriptures, friend- however you have to get there. Because in them you will find Jesus. His arms are open. He’s waiting. His words are tender and His message sure.

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