Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Cast Down

Psalm 42: 5-6
Why are you cast down, O my soul,
and why are you in turmoil within me?
Hope in God; for I shall again praise him,
my salvation and my God.

Several months ago, I had a conversation with one of my best friends. She said something to me that, at the time, hurt my feelings. 

"I know how you're feeling now. You're really excited because everything is so new to you." (That's not an exact quote, but it's pretty close.) Anyway, I remember feeling insulted. The only reason that I'm excited is because Christianity is a new hobby? What I feel now isn't real? My interest and involvement in returning to God is temporary?

But now, six months later or so, I think I know what she actually meant: 

I've felt disconnected from God for the last two weeks or so. Not "abandoned in my time of need," just...I don't know - ignored? alone? forgotten?

I do a lot of things to maintain that connection. We go to church on Sunday and Wednesday. I've joined the choir. I'm working with a mentor and doing a study together. I'm doing another study with some friends. We listen to Christian music all the time. I read the Bible on my own at least every other day. We have a house "verse" up in our kitchen to memorize/think about. We pray. I pray...all the time.

Plus, I just think. I think about it a lot. But lately, the thinking has not been as inspired or in depth as it has in the past. While I'm in church, I'm distracted. A lot. I'll even catch myself falling out of step and pray for clarity and focus mid-sermon. And every once in a while, I will be focused. I will be moved. I will feel God return to my heart. But He's gone almost as soon as He's there.

Hope in God; for I shall again praise him...

Hebrews 11: 1 Now faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen. 

It seems so simple to just have faith and be patient. God will return. It's easy to say. It's easy to conceptualize. Really, how hard can this be? Just hang out - God will come back. 

It's not though, not for me. I am afraid that I'll lose Him again, and He'll never come back. Or I won't.


  1. OK, so I know exactly what you mean. The best way for me to truly feel Christ is not just by attending church, reading the Bible, or listening to music...it's about serving those less fortunate. I've become fairly active in our church's missions program and it's been an incredible experience. Kinda makes it all come full circle...

    1. Thanks, Genny - I think you're right. We have volunteered within the church to help with the nursery during the service, and I'm trying to help out this summer and create a little Christian dance summer program. Maybe I can find a way to volunteer more in the community - the Rescue Mission?

  2. Rescue Mission is it. You will definitely find God there. What you're doing at the nursery is good though. It gets folks to church who would otherwise not make it. I've been thinking of helping out with our children's church, but that would involve attending the early service first so I won't miss the sermon. Maybe once I can get used to this time change? Uggh.

  3. Whitney, I have 2 devotionals that I receive by e-mail every morning. One is Girlfriends in God and one is from the Proverbs 31 ministry. It seems that whatever is going on in my heart, the devotionals seem to hit the nail on the head! Also, through the Proverbs 31 ministry, I have discovered an author named Lysa TerKeurst. I am currently reading her book, "Becoming More Than a Good Bible Study Girl". I find that I relate to a lot of what she writes about. Just some ideas of what has helped me!

  4. Feel ya on this! I was baptized in September and I was invigorated and excited and filled up. It's harder now.

    1. It is! I'm glad I'm not alone in this dilemma though :)