Job 23:8-12, 16; Genesis 16 & Genesis 21
• Silence has a language all its own.
• Some of the hardest things to handle are the times in our lives when God seems like He is a million miles away and is not answering our prayers.
• God promised in His Word to always be there, but it seems as if He is giving us the silent treatment.
• Where are you, God, when I hurt?
• Maybe you have a situation in your life right now, and you are wondering where God is.
• Give Examples
• Do you feel that God is not helping you see what you should do? Do you think that He is silent?
I. Genesis 16 & 21 – Sarah was a woman in the Bible who became frustrated with God's silence when she could not get pregnant. The following are some valuable lessons Sarah learned during this time of silence.
A. First, God's timetable is not always our timetable
8. For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, saith the LORD.
9. For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways, and my thoughts than your thoughts.
1. God cares about the desires of our hearts, but we need to wait on His timing to see them come to pass.
B. Secondly, we should learn to trust and understand that there are some things about God and His ways we will never figure out.
3. Trust in the LORD, and do good; so shalt thou dwell in the land, and verily thou shalt be fed.
4. Delight thyself also in the LORD; and he shall give thee the desires of thine heart.
5. Commit thy way unto the LORD; trust also in him; and he shall bring it to pass.
1. We live by faith… & trust God completely.
C. Thirdly, understand that some people will not understand your commitment to a God who appears to be doing nothing.
From our text – Job 23:10
But he knoweth the way that I take: when he hath tried me, I shall come forth as gold.
1. He knows the way that we take…
D. Fourth, don't try to help God out
1. Hagar – Ishmael (Genesis 16)
E. Finally, Expect the Suddenly
1. Sarah – Isaac (Genesis 21)
2. Expect your Isaac Moment and all of the emotions that go along with it!
II. Sometimes God is Silent because…
A. He wants us to figure things out.
B. There's nothing more to say.
1. He's already said I love you (John 3:16)
2. I will never leave you (Hebrews 13:5)
3. I'll give you My strengths in your weak times (II Cor. 12:10)
4. I will work all things for your good. (Romans 8:28)
• Never mistake God's silence for His absence.
C. There's unconfessed sin in our life.
1. Behold, the LORD'S hand is not shortened, that it cannot save; neither his ear heavy, that it cannot hear:
2. But your iniquities have separated between you and your God, and your sins have hid his face from you, that he will not hear.
1. Sin separates us from God
2. He is listening for the prayer of repentance
D. He's listening for us.
1. God is listening for us to proclaim the Word of God.
Jeremiah 1:12 AMP – Then said the Lord to me, You have seen well, for I am alert and active, watching over My word to perform it.
2. He's listening for statements of faith and trust.
Psalms 16:8 – I have set the LORD always before me: because he is at my right hand, I shall not be moved.
Proverbs 12:3 – A man shall not be established by wickedness: but the root of the righteous shall not be moved.
E. God is working behind the scenes on your behalf. He is waiting for what He has put in place to mature.
But let patience have her perfect work, that ye may be perfect and entire, wanting nothing.
III. Sometimes, God is NOT silent.
A. Sometimes, we can't hear Him because of the chaos or pain in our lives.
B. Here's what you do if you think He may be speaking, but you aren't hearing
1. If you have difficulty hearing God, find a quiet, private place, pour your heart out to Him, then sit and listen.
2. This is not a time to rush or even try to figure things out.
3. This is also one of those times that "Praying quietly in the Spirit" can come in real handy.
Closing / Altar Call