By Zoë Elmore
“For this reason, since the day we heard about you, we have not stopped praying for you and asking God to fill you with the knowledge of his will through all spiritual wisdom and understanding. And we pray this in order that you may live a life worthy of the Lord and may please him in every way: bearing fruit in every good work, growing in the knowledge of God, being strengthened with all power according to his glorious might so that you may have great endurance and patience, and joyfully giving thanks to the Father, who has qualified you to share in the inheritance of the saints in the kingdom of light.” Colossians 1:9-12 (NIV)
Our son came home from school and announced that he would not be attending the college he’d planned but would instead be attending a school in another state. There wasn’t anything we could say or do to change his mind. Wanting to thoroughly investigate this option, we invited the representative from the out-of-state school to our home in order to gather the information necessary to prayerfully advise our son.
With all the facts on the table my husband and I spent much of the next two days in prayer and concluded that it would be in our son’s best interest to return to the college plans already in progress. After a family discussion which consisted of my husband and me trying to put him back on track, Josh stormed out of the room and slammed his bedroom door behind him. For the next twelve months Josh barely looked in our direction and only grunted when he couldn’t answer us with a nod.
I cried out to the Lord for wisdom and guidance, and He whispered, Be quiet and trust me to work in your child’s heart.
I thought, Excuse me, Lord, I’m sure I misunderstood You. You can’t possibly expect me to keep silent on this important matter!?
So I decided to stop reigning down wisdom from the top of “
Before we knew it, we were moving our son into his college dorm room. Despite the evidence of a softened heart, Josh was clearly still angry with us as we left him that day on the college campus. Months passed and we heard very little from our son. I continued to study and pray through these verses.
One afternoon our son unexpectedly came home and joined me on the back porch. He took my hands in his and with tears streaming down his face said, “Mom, I have to ask your forgiveness for my attitude and behavior this last year. While I’ve been at college, I’ve been part of a college ministry and the Lord has opened my eyes to the glorious relationship I can have with Him. Mom, I can’t thank you enough for praying me through these last few months without preaching to me. You allowed the Lord to show me Himself who He is. I’m so grateful that you and Dad continued to love me when I was so angry. I would have never met the godly people at my school if I had disobeyed you.”
Now that is a stand-in-your-chair-and-praise-God-moment if I’ve ever heard one, and I did just that! When I think about that year of quiet desperation, I’m reminded of the spiritual lessons I learned and how they remain an important step in my pursuit of a deepening relationship with my sweet Jesus. I learned to go to the throne instead of the phone for my peace and comfort.
If you find yourself in a desperate place, I hope you will choose to quiet yourself before the Lord in order to study and pray through His Word. In doing so you will receive knowledge of His will, wisdom and understanding for your spirit, and reassurance in place of your desperation.
Dear Lord, thank You for meeting me and teaching me in my quiet desperation. I praise Your name for the miraculous work You have done in my heart and in the life of my son. Only You can change a heart. You deserve all praise and glory. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.
He Speaks to Me by Priscilla Shirer
Study your Bible on the topic of being alone with God.
Write your own prayer to God praising Him for His willingness to comfort and provide for us in our times of desperation.
If you are facing a desperate time in your life right now, what can you do in order to hear from God more clearly?
If the Lord asks you to be quiet in order to work in the life of a loved one, how quickly will you obey?
Hebrews 10:23, “Let us hold unswervingly to the hope we profess, for he who promised is faithful.” (NIV)
Isaiah 50:4. “The Sovereign Lord has given me an instructed tongue, to know the word that sustains the weary. He wakens me morning by morning, wakens my ear to listen like one being taught.” (NIV)
Proverbs 31 Ministries
Matthews, NC 28105
Originally published Monday, 20 August 2007.