Monday, November 8, 2010

Feeling Forsaken?

About the ninth hour Jesus cried out in a loud voice, "Eloi, Eloi, lama sabachthani?"-which means, "My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?" Matthew 27:46.

It’s only too easy to feel forsaken. For the last two days I’ve had grumbling pains in my lower abdomen. Not sure what the problems was, even the hospital doctor had no firm diagnosis. I’m glad the problem seems to be easing itself and I am up to some work again.

But it was a reminder not to come to conclusions or make decisions when I’m not feeling well. The whole world looks blacker, personal goals seem remote, and there’s no doubt God seems further away. I remember feeling like that when Ann and I were pastoring a church that had dwindled to half a dozen people and had built a reputation to match.

After three or four years little seemed to be happening, and I cried to God to get me out of it. He didn’t, and it was eight years before the church built up sufficient numbers to be re-constituted with board and members.

I realized afterwards, that for a while at least, it was not necessarily my job to progress, but to hold the ground. My sense of being “godforsaken” was nothing to that experienced by Jesus on the cross. But in both instances, the sense of loneliness was part of the process in accomplishing God’s purposes.

And in that, we shared in the loneliness God felt when His creation forsook Him.

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