Hey, God! Where Are You?!

5 Mins read

Jeremiah 29:12-14 (NIV)
“Then you will call on me and come and pray to me, and I will listen to you. You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart. I will be found by you,” declares the Lord, “and will bring you back from captivity. I will gather you from all the nations and places where I have banished you,” declares the Lord, “and will bring you back to the place from which I carried you into exile.”

Have you ever found yourself looking around at your life, taking an inventory of your situation, and wondering: where is God? If so, you’re hardly alone. God’s people have been wondering where He was at when they faced seasons of adversity since the Old Testament.

Jeremiah, a prophet who God used to communicate with His people, ministered during a time in which Israel had been taken back into captivity. While their return to bondage was due to their own unfaithfulness, it’s safe to assume that many of them wondered why God would let something like that happen. God even acknowledged that His people were wondering where He was. Take a look at He said to Jeremiah: “You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart. I will be found by you.”

When you seek someone, it’s because You don’t know where they are. If you find someone, it’s because you didn’t know where they were at. God acknowledged that His people didn’t know where He was, as they had been blinded by the fact that they were facing another season of adversity.

Are you facing something right now that has left you wondering where God is? If so, there is a powerful truth that you need to understand before we dive into today’s study. God isn’t mad at you for having questions. However, He doesn’t want you to give up the search.

You’re not feeling alone because God is trying to punish you. The fear that you’re facing does not have to outweigh the faith inside of you. Today, be honest with yourself and be honest with God. If you are frustrated, He can handle that. If you are scared, He can comfort you. Ask God where He is, and then prepare for an answer. After all, He said He would be found when we search for Him.

“I Can’t See God”
Job 23:8-9 (NIV)
“But if I go to the east, he is not there; if I go to the west, I do not find him. When he is at work in the north, I do not see him; when he turns to the south, I catch no glimpse of him.”

If there was ever a man who had the right to wonder where God was hiding, it was Job. The book of the Bible that bears his name tells a compelling, yet heartbreaking story about a man who loved God, trusted Him, and encouraged others to do the same. However, with God’s permission, Satan came against Job, costing him everything that he loved. Eventually, Satan even got permission to afflict Job’s body with painful sores.

Job’s friends, who claimed that they were coming to comfort him, wound up telling him that he was facing the hardships he was facing because of his own sinfulness. However, the Bible teaches us that Job was a good, righteous, upright man who avoided evil. They were speaking about things they did not understand.

While Job did refuse to curse God and die, even though his wife encouraged him to do so, he did acknowledge that he was wondering where God was at. In the verses we just read, Job talked about how he looked for God, but he could not find him anywhere.

Even if you’ve never been tested to the level that Job was tested at, you have likely found yourself looking for signs of God’s presence only to come up with nothing. There’s still hope for you. When you go to the end of Job, you’ll find that God gave Job twice as much as he lost because Job remained faithful.

God didn’t punish Job for saying that he didn’t see God working anywhere, and He won’t punish you for it either. Remain faithful, because even when it doesn’t look like God is doing anything, He is actually working everything out for your benefit. Just because He can’t be seen doesn’t mean He isn’t moving.

A Chance to Grow
1 Corinthians 3:1-2 (NIV)
Brothers and sisters, I could not address you as people who live by the spirit but as people who are still worldly-mere infants in Christ. I gave you milk, not solid food, for you were not yet ready for it. Indeed, you are still not ready.

Paul’s words to the Church at Corinth were scathing. He spoke about the fact that they should have been much more spiritually mature than they were at the time that he wrote this epistle. While growth is never comfortable, growth is necessary. Throughout Scripture, the Christian life is often compared to the natural growth and maturation of a baby.

When you were a baby, someone held you and fed you milk or formula. As you grew older, you started holding your own bottle. You moved up to soft baby foods, eventually holding your own spoon. Today, you know how to use silverware and you eat solid foods.

You may not remember this part, but there were likely points during the growing process in which your parents, grandparents, and other adults took a step back and let you struggle. Why? Because they knew that it would be better for you in the future.

In John 11, we read a powerful story about friends of Jesus wondering where He was at. Lazarus, a close friend of Christ, was dying, and his sisters sent word to Jesus. They knew He could come and heal their brother. Instead, Jesus stayed where He was at for an additional two days.

During that two-day period, Lazarus died. When Jesus finally decided to go to Bethany, the disciples were confused to say the least. Take a look at what Jesus told them about His decision to let things unfold:

John 11:14-15 (NIV)
So then he told them plainly, “Lazarus is dead, and for your sake I am glad I was not there, so that you may believe. But let us go to him.”

Jesus told the disciples that He was glad that He wasn’t there when Lazarus needed Him most. How do we reconcile that with the idea of a loving God who is eager to answer our prayers and heal our broken hearts? How to we take that statement and continue to view God as a miracle-working God who loves to bless His children.

It didn’t make sense to the disciples, and it certainly didn’t make sense to Lazarus’ sisters. When Christ arrived in town, they came to Him to let Him know that if He had come when they had called, Lazarus wouldn’t be dead.

When you back up and read verse 15, you see why Jesus let it happen. It was so they would believe that He was capable of raising the dead. When He lets us face seasons of pain, it’s not because He’s eager to leave us. It’s because He knows we need to grow.

A Closing Prayer:
Heavenly Father, help me to remain faithful even in the moments where I don’t see you. I know that You are pushing me towards growth, but I am scared, and I am frustrated. I need You. In Christ’s name, Amen.

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