I tell him what I know — and it’s all I know.
Most of the time, God isn’t in the wind.
He’s not in the earthquake. Not even in the fire.
Most of the time, God comes as a gentle whisper.
“That’s how it was for you?” he asks.
And I say “Yes. In a whisper.”
Like Elijah, I wanted to cover my head in shame, even as I stood at the mouth of my cave so that I would not miss it. My God came to me in a whisper. When I wasn’t looking and when I had turned away, a voice I couldn’t deny called to me.
In a whisper.
So I tell one who is searching, who is expecting an earthquake or at least a fire that God will come gentle, when his back is turned and he’ll be caught unaware…..but he’ll know.
I tell him to set aside his fears and obey God, to go and climb that mountain, to stand “in the presence of the Lord, for the Lord is about to pass by”…..but that he must be patient.
And that he should turn around, humble his heart, cover his head and stand at the mouth of his cave, for the Lord WILL pass by.
I tell him, remember God’s provision in the past and wait for God to call him from the mountaintop to the desert because that’s where he’ll learn dependence. That is where he will see God at work. And that’s where he will learn, really learn to listen.
There will be times, I tell him, when he will think he is alone. That the others have given up, and that he will want to go where it feels safe. But others still wage battle, and God will be the victor.
I tell him all this, and pray he stands in the battle so that he will know victory in the end. I tell him it is worth the humbling and the trusting and the feeling all alone.
“For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. Then you will call on me and come and pray to me, and I will listen to you. You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart. I will be found by you,” declares the Lord.