No one likes to admit that at any point they have questioned the existence of God but in reality, we have all been there. Whether it was the death of a loved one, a feeling of emptiness, or the lack of hearing from God in your life, we have all questioned whether or not God was really there.
Deep inside most of us know that God does exist, but it is in those moments of despair that we can faintly remember Him working in our lives. As we reminisce on the things that God has done for us, Satan comes and twists it, making it seem less powerful now than it was then. If you have ever felt this way, you are not alone!
I've personally been there and I can say, it is a very hard place to be. I remember it clearly; it was my senior year at Great Lakes Adventist Academy in the middle of a week of prayer. I remember praying in my room and feeling like my prayers were bouncing off the ceiling. I kept crying out to God and heard nothing. I wondered, "Where is God when I need Him most?" I began to get very frustrated and after a few days of this continuing to happen, I wondered if God had just been in my head, if I had been tricking myself all along.
Sadly to say, by the end of the week I was ready to give up on God. The enemy had lead me to believe that every experience that I had had was just a figure of my imagination. Now, being the student spiritual vice president at the time, who could I go to help me with what I was facing? How could the school’s spiritual vice president be doubting God? I felt lonely and hopeless!
Praise God that He is real! By the end of that week God had revealed Himself to me in a miraculous way. Now by miraculous, I don't mean a booming voice from heaven or a dream in the night. But God used His humble servant to speak the words that I had been waiting for. Looking back, I am so thankful for that experience because I can see how my faith was tested and refined. When speaking of a similar circumstance, I love how Mrs. White puts it:
"The eye of Jesus is upon us every moment. The clouds which intervene between the soul and the Sun of Righteousness are in the providence of God permitted to arise that our faith may be strengthened to grasp the great hopes, the sure promises, that shine undimmed through the darkness of every storm. Faith must grow through conflict and suffering. We must individually learn to suffer and be strong, and not sink down in weakness..." - Ellen G. White, Our High Calling, p. 327
Our faith must be tried! These moments of hardship and doubt are permitted so that we can practice our faith in God! It is in these moments that we should pray and fast like never before. We should be using every spare moment to open up God's Word so we can hear His voice!
However, we live in a distracted generation where we can spend two hours on Facebook and escape from our internal problems. We easily spend three plus hours accomplishing nothing on social media, but we can barely get ourselves to read the Bible just once a day. Let's be real! We wonder why we don't hear from God, why we're doubting God, or even why we don't feel His presence in our lives.
Friends, I'm a young person as well and I understand the struggle. Living for Jesus and putting Him first is not easy. Yes, doing devotions can be difficult; but why is it difficult? Because we have other idols in our lives. We have other priorities in place that need to be torn down. This is at the root of why we struggle with our relationship with God and we begin to wonder if He is even there. It's not that God is not speaking to us; it's that we're not listening. We are too distracted by the amusements of the world and we know it but we choose to do nothing about it.
I challenge you, as I challenge myself as well, to put God first. Make Him your priority. If that means getting off social media, do it. If that means leaving the place you are at to go serve God, do it. If that means stepping up in your church as a leader, do it!!
You see, me not hearing God’s voice was just a repercussion of not spending time with Him, not prioritizing Him first. Do not get to that point! Ask God to help you tear down the idols in your life, so you can have a connection with the living God! Then without a shadow of a doubt, no matter what the circumstance you will know that God is with you.