Weather of the Soul
It's important to be aware of the weather patterns in the soul, classically called "consolation" and "desolation."
Consolation is the sense that God is close (e.g., joy, peace, gratitude,
Desolation is the sense that God is far (e.g., anxiety, restlessness, despair, oppression).
God never causes desolation, but he may permit it because we've been negligent. It alerts us that we've drifted. When in desolation, never make/change an important decision, for it is never God's voice. Simply persevere through it and remember consolation is just around the corner.
In fact, here it is . . .
God encourages new Christians through frequent consolations, and later matures us into realizing it's not available on-demand. Seek "the God of consolations vs. the consolations of God."
So consolation is trickier. As we grow toward God, Satan cannot deceive us as easily through desolation, so he has to mimic God under the disguise of consolation.
- Consolation without an identifiable cause can only come from God. For example, we are criticized, yet it produces deep peace because we did the right thing.
- Consolation with an identifiable cause can be from either God or Satan—but upon closer, time-tested examination it must be wholly good to be from God.
In other words, since Satan can't successfully tempt a pious person with direct evil, he must steer him off course with a good thing—a lesser good than what God wants. For example, "my ministry must be from the Lord because I'm being so productive, even though I don't pray much anymore." To identify patterns Keep a Journal.
The Weather Man
God orchestrates the sun and rain for growth. The sun is always brilliant, though sometimes behind the storm clouds.
Don't look for the lightbe the light.
I am calling you out into My light, but first you must pass through what seems like utter darkness to get there. What you don't know won't hurt you; all you do need to know is Me. I am the God of the light and the dark.
Follow the darkness until you see My light, then you will know without doubt or reservation, it is I who calls you and is drawing you beyond the darkness into a marvelous light, the same light that drew wise men, that transfigured Moses, that calls down the centuries to all of My people. "The night will shine like the day, for darkness is as light to You." (Psalm 139:12).
So often My requests of you come to you in the dark, seemingly without plan or reason. But each step of faith brightens the dimness. Do not be paralyzed by questioning or fearing what you don't see. For it is only the steps into the seeming abyss that cause My light to radiate. Step forward into each new day, each day a new step bringing you closer to Me and further along in My call. 'The steps of the righteous are ordered of God.' You need only step them, for 'I make straight the path.'
This is not an easy command, but those who fail to heed it remain frozen in the space of indecision, unfruitfulness, no direction, and ultimately sorrow and anguish. I call My people, all of them, daily, but they must come forth. I am ever there, but they must come forth. I am ever there, searching for they that come; and those I see, I promote. You have few options in the Christian life: answer your call in Me or die on the vine. Is it worth the price, the pain, the momentary inconveniences? Settle for nothing less than My perfect calling. Your righteousness in Me will guide your steps, so stay close to Me always.
I am your God and I will never let you down.