I have shared with you, my readers and friends, often this past year of my struggle in finding God, once again. Not God directly, but the relationship we once had. I hadn’t been hearing God the way I had in the past. I have not sensed His leading in my life. I feel distance from God. I desperately want more of God in my life. I had it once; I had it in good measure. When did I lose it? I knew I had to go back to the year 2009. Somewhere following cancer surgery, a deadly flu, and 3 collapsed discs which put me in a wheel chair for a few months, I lost my connection. I lost the wonder of God. I lost the wonder of God’s interaction in my life. I lost the expectation. What used to captivate me and hold me close grew cold. The burning bushes in my life were nothing more than slow dying embers and quickly becoming a dim memory. I was confused, mystified, at a loss.
I tried, in the initial stages, to get it back. Nothing I did seemed to work. Oh, I could grasp it for a little while and then, as if on cue, it would once again wane; sometimes it disappeared altogether. In the beginning stages of this confusion and distance from God, I read my Bible, I prayed, and I wrote in my journal. Yet, something had changed. I couldn’t put my finger on it; but I knew it was different. I shared with you in my last blog regarding my crisis of faith following a failed surgery and how I listened to the wrong voice. What I didn’t share, was how I took on the belief which said, “I had failed”. God tested me and I allowed the enemy to get the upper hand. I flunked in spades. I was not only disappointed in myself, I was certain God was disappointed in me as well. I prayed asking for forgiveness knowing God is faithful and just. It didn’t get better. Bible passages no longer drew me in. I no longer grew excited to study His word. Weeks rolled into months; months grew into years. I grew more and more discouraged. Margaret Feinberg in her book, Wonderstruck, put into words what I could not, she writes “the sense of holy awe was replaced by unholy indifference.” “Faith invites us into an enchanting journey – one marked by mysteries of divine beauty, holy courage, irrepressible hope, unending love. But in my life, any sense of splendor had faded. I knew I needed a fresh encounter with God to awaken me from my sleep, to disturb my slumber”. She describes to a tee, me! My heart’s struggle now had definition.
A key part of my struggle was revealed over breakfast with a friend. Sharing with her my struggle of these past few years, the Holy Spirit prompted her to ask this question, “Sandra, you know God has forgiven you for your doubts….Have you forgiven you?” The answer…. “No, I guess I hadn’t”. I was too busy feeling shame and disappointment in me at letting God down. Neither of which God desired. God had forgiven me before I even asked, I, however, had allowed the enemy to keep his hold.
In “Wonderstruck” Margaret, writes she felt God calling her to go back to the beginning. For me God called me to revisit the year 2009. It’s time to move forward. It is back to the basics of being in God’s Word daily; praying faithfully, and surrendering my will to His, moment by moment.
I desire to be awestruck by God’s interaction in my life. I desire to be bedazzled by the heavens. I desire God’s favor on my life. I want to experience his kindness. I desire to see his generosity in all creation. No more slothful indifference. When God speaks in the quiet, gentle stillness as He did with Elijah, I will be listening. I will be arising early once again to listen. I will be turning the pages of God’s Word in “Wonderstruck” anticipation. I will be praying to see the “Wonder” of God in each day; in each moment. What better time of year, than Christmas and the approaching of a new year to be “Wonderstruck“.
Until next time,