January 4, 2012
The Glory Ache
I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full, (John 10:10 NIV).
Friend to Friend
Most of us come to Christ with a certain“inloveness”—a stirring of emotion mixed with an inexplicable knowing that we’ve discovered our reason for being. But some years into our spiritual journey, the wonder that swelled during the early years ebbs into routine religion laced with busyness. And we secretly question the point of it all. There has to be more than this, we muse. There has to be something more. What am I missing? What’s wrong with me? I’m doing all the right things, but God seems so far away. I’m trying as hard as I can, but it never seems to be enough. What does God really want from me anyway?
For decades, as I have had the privilege of ministering to women, I have heard the same heart-cry from those who desire to have a deep, intimate, exuberant relationship with Christ but don’t know how to find it.
Perhaps you can relate. You long to feel close to God but sense there’s just something lacking, that you’ve missed the mysterious formula to make it happen. I call this a “glory ache” —a persistent longing to experience God’s presence on a daily basis. Perhaps like most women, you’ve tried desperately to balance the montage of mundane demands and somehow slip God into the white spaces that are few and far between. You long to spend time in the sacred with God, but find the desire crowded out by the responsibilities of the secular—the daily demands—that lay claim to your attention. You yearn to experience God’s presence, but feel far away from Him as you reach to click off the bedside lamp and collapse exhausted once again. Maybe tomorrow, you sigh.
Sound familiar? If so, you are not alone.
The travesty is that we allow the busyness of life to crowd out the Source of life. As the Psalmist wrote, “We are merely moving shadows, and all our busy rushing ends in nothing” (Psalm 39:6 NLT). Ann Voskamp echoes that lament: “In a world addicted to speed, I blur the moments into one unholy smear.”
And in that unholy smear, that blur of the world passing quickly by, we know something’s not quite right. So we strike out to make it all better. And most of us are quick to think ‘something more’ means ‘doing more.’ We ramp it up and gun the engines—sign up for a new committee, volunteer for a new cause, bake one more casserole to feed the sick. We attempt to silence the hunger pains of the heart by feeding it the bread and water of duty. And at the end of the day, while we might feel a self-induced sense of well-being, the hollowness in our soul that can only be satisfied with God echoes with the grumblings of hunger still.
We long for a sense of closeness with God, but we have a hard time putting our finger on exactly what that closeness would look like. It’s just something more. Something different. A flavor we have yet to taste. A country we have yet to visit. A sunset we have yet to experience. A lover we have yet to embrace. There has to be something more, we cry! And we are quite right. We are craving the closeness that comes with an intimate relationship with Jesus.
We try so harder. We go to Bible studies, attend church, say our prayers, and read our devotions. Check, check, check. And yet, we constantly feel that we are somehow letting God down. With the last amen of the day, we sigh, What more does God want from me?
I want to suggest that we’re asking the wrong question. It is not what God wants from you. It is what God wants for you. John 10:10 gives you a hint.
So today, ask God THAT question. You might be surprised.
God, I don’t know quite what to do with this longing for something more…with this glory ache that pulls at my heart. Will you give me glimpses of Your glory today? Help me to see You? To Hear You? I’m expectantly waiting!
In Jesus’ Name,
Now It’s Your Turn
Have you ever felt that “glory ache” I mentioned?
How did the following describe their glory ache? Isaiah 26:9Psalm 42:12, 63:1, 84:2
How did Jeremiah describe anything we go to other than God to satisfy the glory ache? Jeremiah 2:11-13
What does Jesus invite us to do? John 7:37-38
Let’s talk about this…Have you tried to fill your ache for God with something on this earth, and came up hungry still? If so, what was it? What did you learn? Let’s share on www.facebook.com/sharonjaynes. Your honesty will help someone else. I’m sure of it.
More from the Girlfriends
Do you need a tune-up when it comes to tuning-in to God? Do you want to know how to hear that still small voice? If so, check out Sharon’s book, Becoming a Woman who Listens to Godand sharpen your spiritual listening skills! And don’t forget to check out our new Girlfriends in God devotion book, Trusting God.
Click here to learn more about hosting a Girlfriends in God conference in your area or having one of the GiGs speak at your next women's event.
Originally published Wednesday, 04 January 2012.