So... God is real

Last night I went to church. Normally I go to one of the morning services but occasionally I also go to the evening service, which is aimed at young adults and tends to be a lot more casual (with louder music). I like it. The sermon was about God's promises and focussed particularly on the bit in Genesis 21 where God fulfils his promises to Abraham and Sarah and gives them the son He'd promised so many years before. The person who was preaching said that the Bible is full of God's promises and pointed to little strips of paper that had been placed in the pews in front of us on the little shelf where the Bibles sit. Each one contained a promise from the Bible, so we picked them up and read them. The one that was in front of me had Psalm 34:4 - "I sought the Lord and He answered me; He delivered me from all my fears." This is a pretty good promise at any time, but here's the thing: this is the very verse through which I was converted 21 years ago.

Freaky, right? But there's more. For about the last 18 months I have really struggled to pray. It's partly related to the amount of emotional energy that I've been directing towards the counselling/healing 'journey' (bleh - hate that expression) which hasn't left me much emotional energy for anything else. Mostly, though, it's been because I haven't been quite sure how to fit God into it all. I've never questioned where God was when my brother was bullying me - I am sure it made Him as sad as it made me - but I've certainly questioned where God is now. The effects of my brother's treatment of me are so deeply ingrained, and the progress I'm making to get over it seems so slow and so hard-won that I've felt like I'm slogging it out on a tiny island and God is on the mainland and can't even see me.

When I read that verse I was reminded that the God who delivered me when I was a fearful and insecure 17 year old is the SAME God. God knew everything that had happened in my life up to then and everything to come that would bring me to this point. He said to me so clearly last night, "I care about your struggles now in exactly the same way I cared about them the first time you read that verse."

There are plenty of times in my life where I've read bits of the Bible and thought, "Hmmm... that's particularly relevant to me right now" but there have also been a couple of times where God has grabbed me and said, "This is for YOU. Listen to me." Last night was one of those times.

God is real. God is good.


Melissa... said...

My prayers are with you my friend. I've been in spiritual slumps too. I'm so thankful I serve a God who will not leave me. He's with you and knows exactly where your heart is but He wants you to share your heart with Him too.

What special evidence of the Lord's commitment to you this Sunday.

Swift Jan said...

Thank you for sharing that! I think I needed to hear it too


Hippomanic Jen said...

I love it when God gets freaky! I'm glad that He gave you a bit of a reminder while the road is so tough.

Louisa said...

I love what Jen said about God getting freaky. Well said! So glad you had a time of encouragement where God spoke right to you. Praise Him!

Rising from my Ashes said...

God is real.

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