When God Seems Absent

Abbot Tryphon | 05 August 2017
When God Seems Absent

Sometimes we enter a dark night of the soul, where God seems distant from us. This is only an illusion, for God is closer to us than our own breath. These times are allowed by God to bring us closer to Him, much like the loving parent who stands her child on his feet, walks a few feet away holding out her arms, and waits for the child to take his first steps. She is ever ready to reach out and lift the child up should he start to fall, but she knows she must distance herself for a few moments if the child is going to learn to stand on his own two feet. We are like that.

When you find it difficult to pray, light your lampada before your icons and sit silently before them. Say  to God, I am hurting and sad, and am unable to speak to You, so I need You to speak to my heart. Sometimes the most profitable spiritual growth can take place in such periods of brokenness because we see in these moments how very much we need God and depend upon Him.

Be not fearful, dear ones, for God is near, and will not leave you. The Lord is allowing these dry moments, where you are fearing He has left you, as the way of making you reach out to Him. When we are struggling, or even suffering, we grow stronger in our faith. Prayer will return as long is you give God moments in your life when you avail yourself in silence, and listen for His voice.

The parent who constantly does his child’s homework, does him no favor, for the child never learns to stand on his own, and will forever remain dependent on his parent. The Lord wants us to grow strong in our faith, while entering into a mature relationship with Him. If we do not learn to stand on our own, we will forever be like the codependent child, never having the skills to reach high places, and forever remaining weak and fearful.

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