There is a song by Jeremy Camp that talks about how God is still God in the wilderness. It reminds me of when Israel had to wander in the desert for 40 years. They were waiting for the Promised Land, waiting for God to answer their prayers. But while they had to wait, God still provided for them in the desert. He gave them manna to eat and water to drink. He took care of them.
Sometimes in life we may pray and it feels like God is silent. Sometimes He may even ask us to wait. Those times can be hard because we don’t want to wait. We want answers now. We want to overcome these addictions. We want the hardships to end. But God has different timing and He says to wait. To continue steadfastly in prayer and to trust Him.
Without those times of waiting, we would be treating God like a genie. “Give me these answers, help me overcome this, or let this hardship pass from me right now.” But God calls for patience and in those times of waiting, He blesses us. Those times when it seems like God is silent, is actually when we learn to hear Him the most.
God doesn’t always speak or answer loudly. Remember the story of how God was not in the earthquake or the fire, but in the still small voice? Sometimes, the world distracts us from God—our jobs, friends, the things we want, or we stay so busy that we have little time for God. We want what we want or what we think we need, so we end up asking God to do this for us, as if we know what’s best. Rather, we should be asking Him for help and then giving our cares over to Him.
When Jesus knew all that He was going to suffer, He did pray and ask God to let this cup pass from Him. But then He said, “Not My will, but Yours be done.” In other words, He gave it over to God’s hands and then, He obeyed God. In those times when you are waiting for God to break through, to answer those prayers, to keep up with your needs, are you trusting in Him? Use this chance to draw closer to Him. Spend time with Him, praying to God and reading His Word, but without asking anything for yourself. See what God has to tell you and teach you and then wait in His Presence. Sometimes, blessings aren’t always physical, worldly blessings. Sometimes, true blessings are the joy felt and experienced in His Presence, it’s the confidence we gain by knowing that God sees all of time, so He knows and is doing what’s best for us.
You may feel like you’re in a dry desert, thirsty for answers from God. It may feel like He is nowhere to be found, or like He has just left you hanging. Remember that God is still God in all times; in the happy and joyful times, in the land of plenty, and He is still God in the hard times… God in the wilderness.