When God Is Silent

Monday, April 13, 2020
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Listen while you read: "Christ The Lord Is Risen Today"1 (Lyrics)

Luke 23:55-56 – The women who had come with Jesus from Galilee followed Joseph and saw the tomb and how his body was laid in it. Then they went home and prepared spices and perfumes. But they rested on the Sabbath in obedience to the commandment. (NIV)

Silence is truly powerful. For example, think of times when people get the silent treatment in their homes. It is a powerful form of punishment, because we know that there is a broken relationship involved, and we know that we should be communicating in order to solve it

When we get the silent treatment from God, we are left wondering what He means by it. We pray fervently, asking God to intervene and put an end to this pandemic, but it goes on. Why is God silent?

A few days ago, Chris Tomlin hosted a program called Good Friday Worldwide . He invited Max Lucado to speak, and in part of his message, he pointed out that God was very active on Friday, but on Saturday — the Sabbath — He was silent. Max went on to say,

    Any time we discuss Easter weekend, we skip Saturday. Friday and Sunday get all the attention — the crucifixion and the resurrection — and well they should. But let's not skip silent Saturday, because you're in the middle of one. The problem has begun, but the solution has yet to arrive, and you're stuck right here on this silent Saturday. You've been talking to God about your health, about your friend, about your job, about your future, and so far, no answer. It's a silent Saturday. And you wonder: Is God angry? Did I disappoint Him? God knows your career is at risk, your finances are in the pit, your mind is a mess, the world is infected. Why doesn't He act? And what are you supposed to do until He does? Jesus shows us. You do what Jesus did: you wait, and you trust. … Jesus knew that God would not leave Him alone in the grave, and you need to know, my friend, that God will not leave you alone with your fears. His silence is not His absence, His inactivity is never apathy. Saturdays have their purpose. They allow us to feel the full force of God. Had God raised Jesus fifteen minutes after the death of His Son, would we have appreciated the act? For God to solve our problems the minute they appear, would we appreciate His strength? For His reasons, God inserts a Saturday between our Friday and our Sunday. And if you're in the middle of one right now, I just urge you to trust — just to keep trusting. Before you know it, God will help you endure the silence of this Saturday, and you will find a celebration on Sunday.

The current pandemic didn't catch God by surprise. He's not sitting up in heaven dismayed, wringing His hands, and saying, "My goodness, what am I going to do now?" He has had a plan all figured out way in advance, from eternity. He knows how to bring good out of evil. He's waiting for us to recognize that He's the only One who can solve this.

Prayer: Lord, help us indeed to wait and to keep on trusting — trusting that You have this pandemic under control, that You actually have a plan for each of us in our isolation, loneliness, unemployment, financial devastation, and economic collapse. Help us to thank You in advance for all the good that You are going to bring out of it that we just can't see yet. In Jesus' name, we pray. Amen.

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About the author:

Robin Ross <rross@telus.net>
Mission, British Columbia, Canada

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1 Comment

  • PresbyCan Feedback says:

    Thank you.

    Amen Robin.

    Indeed! Thank you.

    Truly beautiful Robin. Thank you.

    Thankyou for the message this morning.

    Thanks for the encouragement, Robin. Be safe.

    Thanks, Robin. Fear is a powerful emotion, but we have a remedy!

    Thank you, Robin. And thank you for your work with this daily newsletter.

    Thank you. What a timely message.
    Blessings to you.

    A great devotional Robin. Thank you!!
    May you and your family keep Healthy and Safe.

    Many thanks for this timely reflection on waiting during our “Saturday time”, Robin.

    Loved your Devotional, brought a little more light into a very sick world. Thanks for that.

    Thanks Robin, reminds us to continue to put our faith in God.

    Thank you for today’s message. an excellent reminder and encouragement.

    Thanks, Robin, for this comforting reminder of God’s awesome Presence even when things seem to be going terribly wrong. Blessings.

    A really meaningful commentary, Robin, during these apocalyptic kind of trials….

    Just SO grateful that I was brought to PresbyCan at such a time as this! How I needed to hear these words of truth and faith and power. I replay them again and again.

    How nice to read something from you, Robin! “Silent Saturday” is a very interesting thought. That’s just one of the ways that God answers our prayers, but one we’d usually like to not see.

    Thank you for sharing this. I never thought of the “silent Saturday” but I do agree that God has a plan and has not been caught by surprise. Also agree we appreciate an answer to our prayers especially if it does not come at once.

    Dear Robin,
    I want to thank you for your excellent, thoughtful, inspiring, and edifying Devotional! It has helped me so much, and I have shared it with others!
    Easter Blessings and Gratitude.

    Silent Saturday. There’s an eeriness about it in a way.
    Would it have been a silent day if Jesus died on Tuesday? I’ve heard people say God caused the pandemic. “How can God let this happen”
    Much room for thought and prayer. And listening in all those silent moments. Thank you for writing.

    Good morning Mr. Ross,
    It is indeed a silent time for most of us. The one thing that has come out of all this that the Sabbath (Sunday) has become a day of rest indeed, no shopping, no sports, that is the one part of all this I do like.
    Thank you for writing this.

    Wow, thank you for an inspiring and very timely devotional. I could not help myself when I read the part, ‘and you will find a celebration on Sunday.’ I raised my hand and said, yes enthusiastically and claimed it!!!
    Trusting you had a blessed Easter and quiet like everyone’s.
    God bless.

    Hi Robin,
    Thank you SO much for this. What a blessing your words (and Max Lucado’s words) are in the midst of this crisis, and an excellent reminder that our faith calls us to wait and trust.
    Many blessings to you for a Happy Easter and thank you for all you do to provide this online ministry.

    Thanks for these thoughts, very helpful as we go into the second month of lockdown.
    It’s been a while since I read your name and I want to thank you for getting PresbyCan Daily Devotionals underway. It’s with joy I can tell you that my husband reads it every day. He decided Jesus really is “the way, the truth and the life” about a year ago.
    I hope you are hanging in during this time.
    With gratitude for your inspired ministry online.

    Dear Robin,
    Yes, God cares, God knows. Let us care and know to the extent that we stay in prayer for scientists to develop treatments, cures, and vaccines and whatever will be effective.
    I pray right now for persons suffering, and for those who are caring for them that they will not become ill.
    Thanks for writing as you have.
    God is great, and God is good.

    Greetings Robin,
    Thank you for submitting this morning’s devotional and including very poignant words of Max Lucado. Your closing prayer is right on that we must stay strong in our faith and trust of our Lord. God has the plan already worked out about this epidemic and we must be patient for His resolve of the current situation and meanwhile be kind and compassionate to each other.
    Blessings to you.

    Thank you, Robin Ross, for this devotional. I have never heard this explanation about
    Silent Saturday before, or possibly I missed it! It made a great impression on me! I have been so blessed by these devotionals over the years. I am always amazed how God speaks to me! I thank all the devotional authors for their messages. May God Bless you and keep you safe through this pandemic. I have never heard so many people talking about getting close to our God – opening themselves to talk openly to others. Praise the Lord.

    Good morning and thank you for the morning message. I was very pleased to read the meaningful explanation of having a day to think about the meaning of Good Friday.
    As I do my daily readings, I am amazed at how much there is still to learn, and how little time I have left!
    All is relatively well, and I am pleased that our service is available on the computer each Sunday. Self-isolation is not so difficult when one has access to so much that is important.
    Blessings to you and your family, and the Church Families throughout this very difficult time in our lives.

    What beautiful words of comfort! Thank you so much for sharing them. I will flag this one in my inbox so I can reread it on a regular basis.

    And sometimes, He’s waiting for us to do our part, or, to get our feet pointed in the right direction. Sometimes when I have sought God about something and He doesn’t answer and I keep asking, He says: I already told you what to do but you haven’t done it yet.

    Dear Robin,
    Thank you for sharing your message and that of Max Lucado with us all. Well said! The picture of the Silent Saturday is compelling, and so pertinent for those in our lives.
    I hope you and yours are keeping well. God bless you for and in your ministry.

    Fascinating concept Robin.
    I keep wondering though about the Chinese doctor who saw what was coming and people refused to listen. He eventually died from the disease. I wonder if he was an instrument of the Lord who, like the prophets of old, were ignored, and disaster followed.

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