Encouragement for Today 03-25-05


March 25, 2005

Encouragement for Today 


God Is With You…Even During Times of Famine

Lysa Terkeurst


Key Verse:


“Thomas said to him, ‘Lord we don’t know where you are going, so how can we know the way?’ Jesus answered, ‘I am the way and the truth and the life.  No one comes to the Father except through me.’” (John 14:5-6; NIV)




What a great question.  Maybe you, like me, have asked this many times during what I like to call a “spiritual famine.”  You know, one of those times when you’re desperately trying to seek an answer from God, but you are just not hearing Him respond.  You’ve stepped out of your comfort zone, you feel uncertain, now what? 


My husband, Art, and I went through something similar to this several years ago when we were struggling about whether or not to adopt Mark and Jackson, our two sons from Liberia.  As we looked for confirmations from God, many came and we decided to proceed with the adoptions without doubt.  We trusted that God was with us and that He would work every thing out.  But one thing kept nagging at me: how in the world would I fit two more lives into my already busy schedule?  Do I give up being in ministry?  Do I give up home schooling?  Do I give up writing? 


I was smack dab in the middle of this famine and though I knew that the purpose was to learn to depend on God like never before, it was hard.  The more I prayed about and pondered trying to make everything fit, the more I kept saying, “There’s no way…there’s just no way.”  I wasn’t feeling led to give up anything in my busy life…which made no sense.  Something had to give. So, I continued to pray and watch for God’s answer.  I would stop trying to figure it all out and simply wait on Him. 


A few weeks later, I flew to California to teach at a women’s retreat.  I prayed off and on the entire 4-hour plane ride and 2-hour drive to the retreat center.  I kept looking for some kind of assurance from God that He was hearing my prayers and that He knew my struggle.  When I arrived at the retreat center without that assurance, I was disappointed.  For now, it was my time to minister to the ladies.  It was my time to give them revelations and confirmations through my talks. Not the time for me to receive them…or so I thought.


I walked to the registration desk to check in and the woman behind the counter handed me a name badge.  Every woman was being given a name badge with their name and a name for God from the Bible.  When I glanced down at my tag, I was shocked.  The name of God I’d been given was, “The Way.”  For days, I’d been telling God there was no way and now He was reminding me that there is always a way with Him.


Thomas had just asked Jesus the way to heaven, but in an even deeper spiritual sense, he was asking the way to assurance.  Jesus’ answer was good enough for Thomas, and it’s good enough for us as well.  Jesus is the way, our certain path in life, our way out of the famine.  He is the truth. God’s promises made real.  And He is the life—the only way to live with purpose now, and the only way to receive life eternal.  I could get stuck in my limited vision that there was no way and wallow in my uncertainty, or I could take God’s hand and confidently proclaim Him to be my way.  We must expand our vision and realize that, yes, in our own strength, it may be impossible.  But with God, there is always a way!


My Prayer for Today: 


Lord, help me to expand my vision.  To look past my spiritual famine and realize that, yes, in my own strength it may be impossible.  But with You, there is always a way!


Application Steps:


Read 2 Samuel 22:29-46.  This chapter shows us what we can do with God’s help.

1)       Read through the list a few times.

2)       What particular accomplishments speak to you personally where you are right now?

3)       Write them down and ask God to show you how you can experience the same type of victorious Christian living that David is describing.


Reflection Points:


Many times, God’s purpose during spiritual famine is for you to learn to depend on Him.


Power Verse:          


John 14:6, “Jesus answered, ‘I am the way and the truth and the life.  No one comes to the Father except through me.’” (NIV)


Jeremiah 32:17, “Ah, Sovereign Lord, you have made the heavens and the earth by your great power and outstretched arm.  Nothing is too hard for you.” (NIV)


Additional Resources:


Radically Obedient, Radically Blessedby Lysa Terkeurst



Dreams of a Woman by Sharon Jaynes





Originally published Friday, 25 March 2005.