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Daniel Swanson Photography

You begged God to speak, and He didn’t.

You desperately needed His guidance. You knew that you had heard from Him before, but this time He said nothing. You felt frustrated, confused, and betrayed.

I get it. I’ve been there. God speaks when you least expect it; then He refuses to speak when you’re longing to hear from Him.

What’s up with that, right?

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Daniel Swanson Photography

God speaks when you least expect it; then He refuses to speak when you’re longing to hear from Him.

The Speaking

The first time God spoke to me, my entire concept of my Christian faith changed. I began to realize that God might want to participate in every moment of my life. Insignificant situations like conversations in the stairwell, grocery shopping, or brushing my teeth took on new meaning. God could invade at any moment with His active Presence!

I started trying to listen constantly, to invite Him into every circumstance. He even spoke a few more times, once at the gym and once in an empty hallway. Both times He altered my perception of myself irrevocably. It was thrilling.

Then He was silent.

Evan and Marie - HQ-7744

Daniel Swanson Photography

God could invade at any moment with His active Presence.

The Situation

After I graduated, the next logical step seemed to be marrying my boyfriend, so I broached the topic in a parking lot, eating ice cream in his car with plastic spoons. We decided to go ring shopping. I even had a specific ring in mind. By the time we met at the mall jewelry store, though, I could feel myself panicking. I wasn’t ready for this.

I had to break the news that I had jumped the gun. I didn’t want to get engaged after all. As you might expect, we was hurt and angry. It was horrible. “Alright, Marie,” he told me, “but it’s going to be a lot harder for me to wait now.”

It didn’t get any better from there.

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Daniel Swanson Photography

What if God didn’t answer?

The Silence

Just a few years after I learned that God could speak, I discovered that He wouldn’t.

The stakes were high: make a decision or risk losing this wonderful man forever. I started praying harder than I had ever prayed in my life. I spent countless hours searching the scriptures for answers and begging for God’s guidance. God said nothing.

I felt completely abandoned. It’s a little difficult even to think about that season because the feelings come back: desperation, terror, anguish, despair, hopelessness. Maybe that sounds dramatic. Just ask any one of my family members.

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Daniel Swanson Photography

Shortly after I learned that God could speak, I discovered that He wouldn’t.

The Step

The panic kept me in an agonizing state of inaction. What if I couldn’t make this decision? What if God didn’t answer? Spoiler alert: He never did.

So I decided to get married scared.

When I stepped forward, trembling, exhausted, and totally vulnerable, I know now that God was looking at me with such tenderness. If I thought I was moving alone, I didn’t know Him very well.

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Daniel Swanson Photography

Sometimes God doesn’t speak.

That’s OK; it doesn’t mean you’re doing anything wrong or that He has abandoned you. He’s still pleased with you. He still loves you. He’s just asking you to put on your big-girl panties and be brave.

The fact that God speaks to you on rare occasions doesn’t mean that He wants to make your decisions for you. I sure wanted Him to make mine. He wanted something better.

He wants you to learn that you can do this.


The Reluctant Bride

P.S. When has God spoken to you? When has He remained silent?

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Daniel Swanson Photography

2 Replies to “When God Doesn’t Speak”

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