When God Seems Silent

When God Seems Silent

Recently, my wife and I (and the teams that we do ministry with) prayed with a young lady regarding her sister (we’ll call them Ruth and Sarah).  Ruth’s sister, Sarah, was about to make a life-altering decision (one that would have lasting physical and emotional consequences).  Ruth called us not knowing what to do or how to convince Sarah to not go through with this.  We prayed with Ruth.  We asked if we could talk to Sarah, but she didn’t think that it would be a good idea.  So we called on our teams to begin to pray.  And we all prayed – for 2 days.

– We prayed for God to speak to Sarah about her decision.  We prayed that Ruth would have influence in her sister’s life to talk her out of it.

– We prayed that Sarah and Ruth would be filled with the Holy Spirit and that Sarah would make the right decision.

– We prayed for the Lord’s will regarding this situation (knowing that God would not agree with her decision.)

– We prayed Scripture over this situation and that God would intervene for His glory.

– We prayed blessings over Sarah, Ruth, and all those who would be involved.

– We even prayed for a bus to break down so that these yound ladies couldn’t make it to their destination.

Image credit: designpics / 123RF Stock Photo

Sarah went ahead with her decision.  My wife and I were heart broken.  As was Ruth, the sister.  She (Ruth) also struggled with her faith and with forgiveness (mostly God’s forgiveness towards her for orginally supporting her sister’s decision.)  Why would God not answer this prayer for His glory right then and there?  Wouldn’t God be glorified by intervening and preventing this decision to be made?  (At least that’s what I thought and how I prayed.)  We were sure we were praying in God’s will.

Each person must decide to respond to or reject the Spirit’s working in their life. 

As much as we would like to choose good (and God) for some people, not everyone will respond favorably to the promptings of the Spirit.  Our job as Christians is not to be their Savior, but to point them to the only one who can save.  We also must remember what Jesus said, ““Whoever listens to you listens to me; whoever rejects you rejects me; but whoever rejects me rejects him who sent me.” (Luke 10:16, NIV)

We Don’t know the ultimate outcome of the situation

God is still God, even though the outcome of this particular situation was not how we had been praying.  As we were grieving, the words of one of Delirious’s songs came to mind

40 million babies lost to God’s great orphanage,
It’s a modern day genocide and a modern day disgrace
If this is a human right then why aren’t we free?
The only freedom we have is in a man nailed to a tree.100 million faces, staring at the sky,
Wondering if this HIV will ever pass us by.
The devil stole the rain and hope trickles down the plug,
But still my Chinese take away could pay for someone’s drugs.
Our God reigns, Our God reigns,
Forever your kingdom reigns.
[ Lyrics from: http://www.lyricsmode.com/lyrics/d/delirious/our_god_reigns.html ]

God still reigns even when God seems silent.  Who know what will happen with this young lady in the future.  Meanwhile, our job is to continue to support both young ladies and show them the love and mercy of Jesus.

God still deserves our praise

Just because God seems silent or does not answer us in the way we expect, He is still worthy of all of our praise.  It doesn’t mean we can’t grieve for someone.  It doesn’t mean that we will understand everything that God does.  God asks us to obey Him always, not understand Him in everything.  There will be things we face that we can never understand.  Our response to God is a trusting worship, one that is anchored in hope.

– Hope that God will ultimately use this situation for His glory.

– Thankfulness that one heart did turn towards God.

– Praise that God forgives, and that if this young lady decides to choose forgiveness, He will be waiting with open arms.

When God seems silent, choose hope.  Choose to believe.  Choose to worship Him.  After all, He first chose us:

For we know, brothers and sisters loved by God, that he has chosen you… (1 Thessalonians 1:4)

Glenwood Prayer Update (new requests added)

For those of you following our Glenwood Outreach, Mike and I went to Glenwood the last 2  Sundays and had really good conversations with several of the residents. We got some good information as far as ways that we can help out, but we will need some help making connections. What follows are prayer requests and ways that we can continue to help the residents (and possibly ways for you to get involved). We are going to create a survey this week and contacting Becky, the apartment manager, to make sure she’s okay with us using it with residents.  Our whole goal of being involved with these people is to not assume what they need, but to really listen to them as far as their true needs.  We also will make sure we can use the clubhouse one night a week for a women’s Bible Study.

PRAYER REQUESTS

*New*

James – (apt. 515) – James wife has left him recently.  There are 6 kids in the picture (4 of them are theirs).  James definitely knows the Word.  He was quoting Scripture while we were talking with him.  He is open to being part of a men’s group and definitely needed some encouragement, but he seems to be doing okay.  We are praying for reconciliation with his wife and strength for him and his children.  We are also praying that Christ would guard his heart and mind and the hearts and minds of his children.  They are living with their mother, and it is not a good situation.

Erika (apt. 425) – Erika recently got her car totalled by a drunk driver.  She’s okay, although she did injure her ankle and is supposed to be on crutches.  The car is owned by  someone else, so she has to get a power of attorney to get the money to buy a new one.  We are praying that she is able to do this quickly, and that her ankle heals supernaturally quick.  She has also been struggling with anxiety, so we are praying Philippians 4:6-7 over her and that the peace of Christ would guard her heart and mind.

*Last Sunday*

Shontiel – (apt. 212 ) – she said that the biggest need right now for her and her friends are car problems and auto maintenance (her mechanic says she probably needs another car, and that it will cost more to fix than what it’s worth. We need to pray for a new car for her! – She also told us that Kristen is having car issues as well, which we’ve known about but need to help her get fixed (I don’t remember what’s wrong) – She thinks a Single mom’s ministry would be helpful for encouraging and connecting the women in Glenwood apts. and a mentor program for young boys – to connect them with consistent adult male relationships.

Rachel (apt. 717) – the AC on her car is out and needs $700 or so to get it fixed. She’s still working part time but has also applied for a FT job – let’s pray that she gets it! – She also said a mid-week Bible study would be helpful – she doesn’t know any other single moms in the apt. community. She attends Cowboy Church.

Abuk -(apt. 313) – please pray for encouragement for her. She is experiencing a lot of doubt. (Praise) – She found a tutor at AC that is going to help her prepare for her next (and final) time she can take the test to get into the LVN program. She also mentioned that gas was a big expense.

Paco – (apt. ?) – Mike and I met Paco as we were leaving. He works as a security guard and was about to leave when we saw him by the pool. From our brief conversation, he seemed to be a believer, but also let us know about a young man, James, in Building 5 that needed some encouragement. His wife has left him (James) recently and Paco said James was struggling. Mike and I plan to go back sometime this week and try to visit with him.

Manny and Veronica -(apt. 625)- I briefly talked to Manny, Veronica, and Fredarius. They were leaving to go to a family cookout. I had been praying this week that I would run into him, so go God! I asked if it would be alright if I stopped by sometime and visited with him and he said yes. So, let’s pray that God will arrange that encounter!

– Please pray with us that we will not enable these residents but empower them. We do not necessarily just want to give them everything for free, but we want them to contribute some so that they feel empowered as a person as well as helped.

Biggest Needs at Glenwood

– Automotive help for several single moms (If anyone has any connections, please let me know)

– Bible study for moms and a woman to step up and lead it.

– Gas cards (maybe offer them at a discount to residents – Glenwood groupon idea)

– Mentor program for youth

Upcoming Events

Last week of June – Mission Amarillo Group to Glenwood & Glenwood Community Block Party

Weekly visits with residents

If you would like to contribute to our cause or learn more about our ministry teams, please contact Will at ratlif.will@gmail.com.