Recognizing God in the Dark Places of Our Lives

One Sunday morning, I walked into church early while my husband went to pray with the Elders. I walked into the sanctuary where the Praise team was practicing. The room was dark, and I struggled to see who was there.

I began looking around for a place to sit and felt a tap on my shoulder. There was a dad with his little girl reaching out to me. She had seen me come in and wanted to be held by me.

I had spent some time with this girl earlier in the week, and somehow, she must have remembered me. I was surprised she could see me in the dark room, and the fact that she saw me and was reaching out with her hands to be held by me deeply touched me.

Over the next few days, I kept remembering and pondering that moment, and God began speaking to my heart.

There have been many dark times when it has taken me a while to see or notice God’s presence. Instead of drawing close to Him and taking time to build a relationship with Him, I have pulled away in my frustration, anger, and resentment.

Sometimes I think things are so dark and they feel so terrible I can’t imagine how it can be God. Other times, I don’t recognize Him as that fourth man in the fire. It looks more like I am dying than being saved. Still, other times, because I have pulled away and not spent time with Him, it gets harder to recognize Him in those places.

I thought back to that sweet little girl. I love how God speaks so gently through these precious moments. He showed me what He desires for a response from me in the dark places.

When you pass through the waters, I will be with you;
And through the rivers, they will not overflow you.
When you walk through the fire, you will not be scorched,
Nor will the flame burn you.
“For I am the LORD your God,
The Holy One of Israel, your Savior; Isaiah 43:2-3a

God promises to be with us and that we won’t be overtaken by the darkness around us. I am so thankful for that!

I have to confess that sometimes I struggle to believe this promise. It doesn’t always feel like He is with us or doing His best work in and through us, yet He always is, and He longs for the response that the young girl gave me.

He wants me to recognize him in the dark rooms and circumstances of life, and He desires that I will reach out to Him so He can hold me.

Yesterday, our small group ladies’ Bible study heard personal testimony from one of the women who had been in a dark place physically and literally. God met her there in the most personal way. She shared it with us, and as she shared it, other circumstances and testimonies from others in the group were brought to remembrance. We all left encouraged and reminded of who God is to us.

Let’s share with one another, pray for one another, and encourage one another. We can remind each other and hold each other up when we are struggling to see God in the midst of the dark places. It is a treasure of gift from God. Let’s not take that for granted or waste those opportunities.

We would love to be praying for you, and I would encourage you. If you don’t feel like you have those relationships in your life, please share them here. We will pray for you, encourage you, and hold your arms up.