Updated: Jan 17, 2021
Soul Sadness. It’s not a bad day it is not a body ache. Soul sadness is the emptiness down to your spiritual core. Have you ever experience a time of soul sadness? I am not talking about a day when you didn’t feel well or when you had a bad day. I am talking about emptiness that seems like a bottomless pit. Sometimes in life you are doing what you feel certain God has called you, yet sense you are in a deserted land. Paul became so discouraged he recorded the words “despaired of life.” The Apostle Paul is arguably the most fruitful minister. He was the greatest missionary the world has known. The most accomplished church planter. He penned two-thirds of the New Testament. This man, once the greatest persecutors of the early church, became its greatest champion. Yet, he utters the words
"We were under great pressure, far beyond our ability to endure, so that we despaired of life itself.9 Indeed, we felt we had received the sentence of death. But this happened that we might not rely on ourselves but on God, who raises the dead.10 He has delivered us from such a deadly peril, and he will deliver us again. On him we have set our hope that he will continue to deliver us,11 as you help us by your prayers." It doesn't matter how spiritual you are, there will be at least one time in your life, you will feel defeated beyond repair. Sometimes God cannot be felt because of all of our emotions, but it does not mean He isn't doing a work.
What causes you to sometimes to be where God has called you, yet there are no joys of serving, or doing the task He has called you to? I think somewhere along the way you, me, everyone loses spiritual eyes. At some point, I think we only look through our fleshly vision, and cannot see what God sees. When we are looking through our fleshy eyes we see problems, disruptions, and one obstacle after another. Our very Soul becomes discouraged, and the devil even tempts us that it’s not worth it. However, if we take the time to look through our spiritual eyes, we might see it differently.
Let’s try to understand it through a story, or parable. Once a man came to a beautiful meadow with a huge oak tree, dandelions, green grass, and butterflies fluttering through the air. The scene was exquisite, and the man knew he would visit it often. A week later the man came back to visit his favorite spot, only to find it had been demolished. A farmer had plowed over the whole field, and nothing lay there but the bare earth. The green lush grass was gone; the butterflies and birds had moved on; the man stood with deep disappointment. How could someone ruin something so spectacular? The man walked away; however, when he returned he saw a beautiful crop of golden yellow corn. The birds had returned, and the sun shown brilliantly in the distance. The man realized when the ground was bare he could not see the vision of the farmer. What he thought the man had ruined was the preparation for a great harvest.
Sometimes in our life we cannot see the vision because we are looking at all the distractions. All we see is the bare ground of the day-to-day grime we are facing, and darkness that doesn't seem to lead to light. We forget to put on our spiritual glasses and recognize, just maybe, God is laying the ground- work for a great Harvest. It can be in those times of not seeing or feeling Him, that God gives you the greatest gift "clinging ONLY to Him". It often is the only way He can move us from a mindset of thinking we have control, to knowing He is in ultimate control.
You may be sitting in an office, a classroom, a doctor’s office wondering: God what am I doing here? What is your plan for me? The truth is no matter what our job title, we can all loose sight of what we are living for, and in essence who we are serving.
1 Corinthians 9:
22……….. I have become all things to all people so that by all possible means I might save some. 23 I do all this for the sake of the gospel, that I may share in its blessings.
One phrase can sum it all up: I do all this for the sake of the gospel. If we are doing it for any other reason, we will always be disappointed. But God has promised, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness." I love what New Song's lyrics, “When I can’t see his plan, When I can’t trace his hand, Trust his heart.” In the end it’s all about our Faith, and learning to trust someone besides our self. If we are currently having trouble seeing what God has planned for us because of all the turmoil caused by life, the verse in Daniel 10:12 should be reassuring for us. “From the first day you set your heart to understand and humbled yourself before your God, your words have been heard.” How do we regain our spiritual eyes? We do so by setting our hearts upon God. “set your heart” comes from a Hebrew transliteration “leb” meaning will, the inner man, heart” It is to intentionally focus on something, and turn toward it. For instance, you do not have a pristine yard by never mowing, fertilizing, or pulling the weeds. You have a pristine yard by focusing continuously on the nutrients the grass needs. We also will never see through our spiritual eyes if we do not invest time in prayer, bible reading, and meditation on God’s Word. So even in the most excruciating, painful times, we still have to choose to look to the cross. Not only does He feel the pain, He has paid the ultimate debt for all pain and sorrow.