These are just a few words that could describe my spiritual life the past few months.
“MONTHS!? That sounds miserable! Why would you allow yourself to go months like that, Victoria?” you ask.
Honestly, busyness has crept in and with that came an abundance of laziness. I have been so preoccupied with life and work that I have failed to slow down and enjoy the Life Giver. Have any of you ever been here before?
I have been deeply “missing” God. My mind and soul have felt weak. Feelings of shame due to my lack of pursuing His presence have been a constant reminder of my distance from God. I have found myself often apologizing to the Lord about not guarding my time with Him, but never truly repenting, never entirely turning from my sin and seeking His face and His ways. Oh, that my ways were steadfast in obeying His decrees!
As I was wallowing in my regret and shame about how I have spent these past few months, God reminded me that my hunger is a reminder that I dreadfully need Him. This longing just reinforced my deep demand of fellowship with my Father. I am thankful for this hunger because it pushes me toward Himself.
In the book of Hosea, we see God calling the people of Israel to repentance through the use of Hosea. The Israelites were prostituting themselves with other gods, rejecting what was good and exchanging the glory of God for the shame of idols. Hosea proclaimed, “Return, O Israel, to the Lord your God, for your sins have brought you down. Bring your confessions, and return to the Lord” Hosea 14: 1-2.
God promised that if they repented, he would bring healing and restoration. The Lord said so beautifully and mercifully, “Then I will heal you of your faithlessness; my love will know no bounds, for my anger will be gone forever” Hosea 14:4.
Through the book of Hosea, we see a jealous God desiring a relationship with His people. The Israelites were neglecting their God and were not being faithful to Him. They were distracted and engrossed by earthly things. They failed to realize and trust in the goodness of God.
I am often guilty of the same sin by not recognizing who God is and following Him with abandon.
I am thankful for the promise that, “He satisfies the longing soul, and the hungry soul he fills with good things.” Psalm 107:9. When we are hungry, He fills us a new with Himself. He refreshes our weary soul when we draw near to Him with a cleansed heart. What truth to relish in!
When we realize that we do not have to live in defeat or loneliness, we can fully embrace His presence more enjoyably. We can trade the weary, skeleton like bones, for ones with flesh, fully alive and functioning with and for Him.
Today, I was reminded by this verse found in Psalms 73.
But for me it is good to be near God;
I have made the Lord God my refuge,
that I may tell of all your works.
How truly good it is to be near my God! The one who redeemed my life from the pit and crowned me with love. I am reminded to delight in God’s goodness and tell others about His greatness! When I repent of my sin, He is faithful to forgive me of all unrighteousness. There is fullness of JOY in His presence. His mercies are new every morning. Praise Him!