In January I looked at where I was in my spiritual journey and realized that I had been in the wilderness. I related to verse 1 of Psalm 63 which David wrote in the wilderness of Judah:
O God, You are my God; Early will I seek You; My soul thirsts for You; My flesh longs for You in a dry and thirsty land where there is no water.
I felt lame. I hate the wilderness experience. Then a phrase from verse seven caught my attention: “in the shadow of Your wings.” The Lord comforted me by speaking to my heart: That is where you are. The remainder of the verse says, “I will rejoice,” so I rejoiced in that.
The above exchange with the Lord was on my heart for hours and I finally understood. The wings represent the ark of the covenant which represents the presence of God. I hadn’t been feeling the presence of God for months on end. The tangible feeling I love to experience during times of worship was gone. I had been experiencing spiritual dryness. When you are in someone’s shadow you are still nearby. He had not forsaken me.
But God had a purpose for placing me “in the shadow of His wings.”
Why exactly was I in the wilderness? At the end of 2008 there wasn’t anyone else to take over the ministry of our age three to six year old class. I saw a need and filled it. During the whole of 2009 God showed me a new vision for the ministry, changing the format, breaking it into two classes, and teaching every Sunday. On top of that time consuming responsibility of development, I still kept up with homeschooling my boys and the music ministry.
At the beginning God showed me who I would train up as the new director. One day near the end of 2009 she came to me saying God had called her to this ministry and did I want her to take it?
January was when transition began from me to her and that was when God told me I was in the shadow of His wings. If all along the way I had been strongly feeling His presence, I could have easily gotten puffed up during this season: God is speaking and showing so much to me; His presence is such a confirmation. Look at this awesome work I did for Him!
But no. I was in the wilderness. My God saw fit to place me in the shadow of His wings. He didn’t forsake me, but in His wisdom caused me to be in a dry place because He knew that through it I would be saying: God I need You! I am dry. Fill me up so I can minister again. I can’t do this on my own. I need your strength and guidance. Be my help, Lord.
I am thankful that I can find refuge in Him.
Maybe you are in a dry season with the Lord. Perhaps God is doing a working humbleness or faith in you. Perhaps He is taking you to a new level. Perhaps He is testing your faithfulness to Him even if He does not seem readily present.
Question: Have you ever been in the shadow of His wings?