How long have you been waiting for God to answer – for God to move – in your hard season? Sometimes I wonder why God is silent when I need Him most? I’ve heard many sermons offer reasons why God is silent – this post is not about that. Whether God is silent or not is not the point. What do we do and how are we supposed to be still when God is silent?Whether God is silent or not is not the point. What do we do and how are we supposed to be still when God is silent? Click To Tweet
When God is Silent He is Not Still
First, let me say that When God is silent he is not sill (read more about that here at Desiring God), but again, that is not the point. Sometimes it feels like God is silent like God doesn’t see the big problem or maybe God doesn’t care about the hard season we are in. Can you relate?
Today’s verse shows that we are not alone in thinking God is silent and will help us in finding hope when life seems dark.
“Do not keep silent, O God; Do not hold Your peace or be still, O God.” (Psalm 83:1 AMP)
“Why Has God Forsaken Me?” is okay to ask!
The context of Psalm 83:1 is fascinating. Many theologians believe Psalm 83 is written at the time of 2 Chronicle 20 (which as a side note is my favorite passage in the Bible).
The Israelites are on the brink of an invasion where they have zero chance of survival. Where is God? Why hasn’t God stepped in? It feels to them like God is silent, holding his peace, being still. Oh, how hopeless things feel when it seems God is being still while we are anxious.
God tells us to “be still” but that feels impossible if God is not on the move! When faced with a trial, it seems impossible until it’s done and we see how God was with us?!
This Psalm begins as a prayer… no, not just a prayer actually, but a prayer of desperation. If it is indeed paired with 2 Chronicles 20 we know that they were praying and fasting. Not only were they saying “God I need you”, but “God if you don’t show up we are done for.
Impossible Situations Happen
What impossible situation are you waiting for God to move in?
Over the years there have been many impossible in my life. If you are new to HopeJoyInChrist you can read more about:
- How I pleaded with God to save my marriage here
- Why I need God’s help raising a child with special needs here
- How I am in a battle with chronic illness and desperately need God to move in a powerful way in my life.
Have you ever taken prayer to the next level and added a time of Fasting?
Learn where to begin with that here. This is part of a 40-day fast together – a fast from time. Giving God our first and our best time to learn how to be still!
How Do You Hear What God is Telling You?
How can we actually learn to “be still” when it seems like God is silent?
We observe in Psalm 83:1 that prayer matters!
We Pray. Are you already praying? Pray harder. Pray as if your life depended on it! Become a Prayer Warrior! Telling your Big God about your problem causes lots of things to change.
But first, some questions I get when my answer is to pray.
Questions About Prayer
We all have questions about prayer. Here are some of the questions I get often and the answers I share!
Does God hear when you cry out in prayer?
Yes, and He always answers, though His ways and timing are so far beyond what we understand or would choose. Can I get an Amen?!?!?!
If you are asking, “does God hear my cry” know that He really does!
How do I talk to God?
God is relationship-driven. Talk to Him like you talk to a friend like you talk to your dad (if that was a good relationship) like you talk to your husband. But add some awe and fear… because He is also still God.
How to ask God for something?
I advise you to ask it of the Bible first. Does it go against God’s word? Then ask God to change the desire of your heart to match His.
If it is biblical, ask and keep asking until He answers. Do not make a decision or move until He answers. He will answer.
How to talk to God and hear Him?
I get it. We pray often and it rarely feels like God answers. How do we hear from God when He answers?
Often God answers through scripture, through other people (a song, a preacher, a friend, a radio sermon) and sometimes we hear His still small voice. But if the prayer is about something big I will ask God for a sign that the answer was Him and not just me wishing it to be.
How to ask God for a sign?
LOL, My husband says I’m spoiled by God. I just stubbornly dig my heels in, refuse to move until God makes it absolutely clear it is Him. Especially if the answer I think I heard sounded too much like me.
Why is God Silent When I Need Him Most?
It does feel like God is silent… but is He really? Often after the fact – WELL after the fact, you can trace His hand. When it feels like HE is silent, keep leaning in and doing the last thing He said to do. And get in a community that allows encouragement to keep you going!
Is Silent Prayer Biblical?
Praying silently. Yes.
Unspoken requests… I do not see that in scripture. Remember God is relationally driven. He wants to hear from you specifically and He wants us in real relationships with people who know our real stuff… so I am not sure unspoken requests bear much weight in the prayer realm.
Related: God in the Silence Bible Verses
Hearing God in the Silence
Psalm 83:1 is a great one to apply!
The reality is that God is with you, always with you. Prayer is a way to talk to Him about the problem you are facing. The beauty of prayers in the Psalms is that they begin with the fear of the big problem and end in awe of how powerful God is.
The Psalmist calls upon God to defend His Name and show Himself big enough to defend His People from their real enemies.
Prayer helps me remember who God is, what God has done in the past and brings me peace to be still in the storm. God is not absent! Lean into Him in the silence!!!!!!!
Prayer is trusting that God will answer and fight for you. When you pray you are not complaining or worrying – you are being still.
When it feels like God is silent we need to remember to pray and be still. Hearing God in the silence is a skill you hone – a Spiritual Discipline.
A Prayer to Be Still When God is Silent
Great God of Most High over all the earth. I trust You. You have been faithful every time I’ve brought my needs to You. Forgive my doubting. I believe, help my unbelief.
It feels like you are silent, my soul feels dry, Lord I need You. Speak into this desert season. I confess my doubt and my fear and my anxiety over the change and the hard things that just won’t go away. Forgive me. Change my heart to Be Still, to trust in You even when it’s hard, even when I don’t understand, even when you feel far away and silent.
Please speak. Show me the way to walk. Give me direction and wisdom about how to move forward. I feel stuck, alone, afraid, and under attack. Fight over me. Hide me under the Shadow of Your Wing through the eye of this storm. To You be all the Glory.
Pray Bold Prayers When God is Silent
Some final thoughts on Psalm 83:1. Your problems and my problems are rarely as big as a multitude of armies storming our city to wipe our nation from the face of the Earth. Poor Israel! Why is it they can never have peace?
My problems are rarely big enough to threaten God’s Name but God cares about me. God cares about you and what you care about (1 Peter 5:7).
We can come boldly before the throne room of grace and ask for help in our time of need. Let me be sure you read that right…
Right up to God’s Throne
Ask for Help
He told you that you could! We need help remembering though… I do. Do you? How can I pray for you today?
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