Our journey of faith draws us ever closer to God. We are, however, not constantly growing each and every day. Our growth is sometimes like that second cousin that you only see at the occassional reunion, wedding, or funeral. You see him and marvel at how he has changed since you last saw him, but his growth has been gradual.
This journey of faith has its valleys and moutain tops as well as its wrong turns. There are moments when we connect powefully to God or the Holy Spirit and feel a growth spurt. There are also times when we turn aside and stumble in our sin. As we walk through the times of sin and repentance, looking back we can also see signs of overall growth. Things we once did not see as sin are things we now wrestle with and our cycles of repeating the same sin has greater intervals in between. We can see God and the Holy Spirit at work within us.
Our journey will also have seasons like the one described in Psalm 80. We will have times when we cry out to God followed by what feels like silence. We will have times when it feels like we are subsisting on the ‘bread of tears.’ In these times we long for His presence, for the touch or the whisper of the Holy Spirit. The Good Shepherd is always near. He never is far from His sheep. So in these seasons we must continue to pray, to read His word, to seek His face. In response to our faithfulness, suddenly He will be there. It will seem like God never left. All will be well.
Scripture reference: Psalm 80: 1-7