“Let us hold unswervingly to the hope we profess, for he who promised is faithful.” Hebrews 10:23
Have you ever found yourself in a crossroads? Questioning how you got to where you are, and which way you should choose to move forward? It can feel like a sudden shift in your life. One day you are on a mountain top, shouting thanksgiving, and praise to the Lord. Then all of a sudden you find yourself in the midst of a valley, not knowing how you got there.
The good news about this, is that Jesus is the same yesterday, today and forever. Although we may feel far from God, He is always drawing near. As Christians, we should have the constant reassurance that faith is not always a feeling, but a commitment that we choose to make everyday. I know this for myself, because I have recently walked through this kind of season.
In the midst of feeling a “drift” from God, I constantly questioned.. How did I get here? Why am I not “feeling” God? I was still reading my bible, going to church, serving, and journaling. I continued to tell myself I'm doing everything right, aren't i? I felt stuck, and helpless. The reality is that as a Christian, we will face seasons in life where it feels like we've been left alone, that God has abandoned us, but that is where God is doing his greatest work!
We can't know the good, until we've been through “bad.”
“And I will give you treasures hidden in the darkness– secret riches. I will do this so you may know that I am the Lord, the God of Israel, the one who calls you by name.”
I hold tightly to this scripture. All over the bible you will find verses that remind us that the valley is necessary in order to get to the mountain top, but in Isaiah 45:3 God states that it's in our darkness, where we will discover his treasures. I know this to be true. When I was going through one of the most difficult seasons, I felt that there would be no way out, that maybe I had “drifted too far”, but it was at that time that my faith was being tested to multiply tenfold.
Soon after, I found true freedom in Christ. Not only from that season, but from past hurts and burdens as well. The foundation of my faith has already been established. I chose to stand firm on that.
No matter how the wind may blow, no matter the wilderness that we find ourselves in, or the weariness of our faith, the battle has already been won. Jesus has the victory, and he invites us to call out to him to walk with us, and to set us back on his path.
“Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways submit to him, and he will make your paths straight.”
I know it may seem hard, sometimes even impossible in the midst of drifting, but some practical steps that have helped me along the way were..
Prayer and Worship
Pray in the valley, worship through the pain, remind yourself that though the storm may seem big, God is bigger.
Writing an account of every thought, emotion, obstacle. Writing this all out allows you to one day come back when you reach the mountaintop to visibly see the faithfulness of God when you were in the valley.
“Write, therefore, what you have seen, what is now and what will take place later.”
Continue to give what you've got. I found that when I begin to isolate myself, I begin to drown in my own thoughts and emotions. Putting myself in a position that I can put others before me, allows God to not only work in their lives, but mine as well.
“Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance. Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything.”