For months, I was seeking the Lord, spending time with Him, praying, doing everything I knew to do only to find myself continually hitting a roadblock. I felt like in every attempt to connect with Him, I was hitting a concrete wall. I tried everything I knew. I couldn’t figure out what was blocking me. Where did He go? Why could I not get through? As much as I tried, I couldn’t get over it; I couldn’t go around it; I couldn’t crawl under it. It was just there, blocking my way!
Finally on a Thursday morning in June (last year), I had a breakthrough. I broke through the roadblock! I hit a place that I was at the end of my rope. I told God, “that’s it, whatever it takes, I surrender! I need you more than anything in my life. The one thing I desire above all things is to enjoy sweet fellowship with you. Above everything, I want your presence in my life.” I sat in my quiet time crying my eyes out. I truly hit a place of willing surrender that required laying down more than I ever have had to let go before. I was so desperate that I was willing to do whatever He asked. I was willing to let go of everything I was holding onto if it was what was blocking me from Him.
I still couldn’t quite put my finger on what was actually the “roadblock,” I just knew that I was ready to see it and move it out of the way! I had been sitting in Isaiah 40 for several weeks, but that morning as I read it, God opened my eyes to something I had not seen.
“Comfort, comfort my people, says your God. Speak tenderly to Jerusalem, and cry to her that her warfare is ended, that her iniquity is pardoned, that she has received from the LORD’s hand double for all her sins. A voice cries: “In the wilderness prepare the way of the LORD; make straight in the desert a highway for our God. Every valley shall be lifted up, and every mountain and hill be made low; the uneven ground shall become level, and the rough places a plain. And the glory of the LORD shall be revealed, and all flesh shall see it together, for the mouth of the LORD has spoken.” (Isaiah 40:1-5)
Over the prior weeks I had been praying for God to make a way in my wilderness. Asking Him to meet me in my desert place and make a highway for Himself. I had been desperately asking Him to raise up the low places and make the mountains and hills in my life low, that I would walk on even ground. I had been begging for him to prepare the way, that I might enter His presence. That His Glory would be revealed. This particular morning however, the Lord spoke to me, “Comfort, comfort my daughter. Speak tenderly to her, that her warfare is ended and her iniquity is pardoned, that she has received from the Lord’s hand double for all of her sin.” I looked at my study notes on verses 1-2 and read this, “Though their unbelief has brought them low, God still identifies with his people. Speak tenderly….God aims to win their hearts back to Jerusalem- In Babylonian exile, they are far from Jerusalem, but God dignifies them with their true identity and assures them that he understands their sufferings.”
At that moment, I broke. I saw right then that my roadblock was unbelief. I believed God for other people. I believed Him in certain areas of my life, but I had one big area that was gripped in unbelief. I sat and wept. I put on my i-pod and went for a long walk. I walked for a better part of 2 hours, just me and the Lord. It was a time of broken repentance. I wept and cried out before him, confessing my unbelief. That moment, I surrendered before Him those things that I was trying to do on my own. I asked him to remove the roadblock of unbelief, completely confessing it before him. Though my unbelief had brought me to a very low place, I felt his comfort and compassion. He spoke tenderly to me and he pardoned my iniquity. He ushered me into His presence, like water in the desert. There is nothing that satisfies the dryness of my soul or the aching of my heart, but the abundant love of my Savior. I am so grateful that He loves me in the midst of my sin, even when I can’t see it. That he is persistent in drawing me to Him. There is nothing in this life that compares to knowing Him and abiding in His presence. That morning, I opened up my hands and surrendered everything to God. I made the choice to trust Him and believe Him with everything. “Faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen” (Hebrews 11:1). Faith requires that we believe Him in circumstances that we can’t always see Him at work.
Oh Lord, I will put my hope in you with full assurance. I will trust you with what I cannot see. I believe you. Please help my unbelief.