I have felt dry lately, spiritually speaking. Have you ever felt that way? Like you’re in a desert sort of place with no hint of water anywhere? I haven’t felt like going to church, haven’t felt like reading my Bible, haven’t felt anything really. A few weeks ago, I sat and thought about what was wrong. Why was I feeling this way? I even sent a few desperate pleas heavenward, hoping things would change, that a stream would burst forth, or I would be magically transported to some type of oasis. But nothing. For the longest time, nothing.
It was bad enough that I joked one day, I was becoming anti-God. If you know much about me, you know that really has never been an issue for me. I’m not saying I’ve always felt close to God, but usually I’m on more speaking terms with him.
Then I remembered something or rather I tried something. I started to whisper one-word prayers heavenward. Here are some of the words I used:
Hope, light, life, faith, patience, faithfulness, truth, knowledge, peace.
Really the list could go on and on. After all, when it comes to prayers, using one word to lift them heavenward really isn’t such a bad idea. I was reminded of a story I had heard at a camp I worked at one summer.
There was this guy who was good at darts - infamous for hitting the bullseye every time. One day another fellow asked to watch this guy practice. He wanted to see for himself what was going on. So, the pro took him to the side of the barn. At first the guy was puzzled when he turned the corner. There were no bullseyes anywhere on the side of the barn. He watched, mystified, as the pro raised his bow and shot at the barn. Then, after releasing his bow, he walked up to the barn and drew the perfect bullseye around it.
That’s what I did with my one-word prayer. Sent it heavenward waiting for God to draw a bullseye around it. That’s what, by faith, I believe happened. God took every one-word prayer and did something with it. Because he’s God and nothing is impossible with him. Because the Spirit intercedes for us with sighs too deep for words to express
If you’re feeling lost in a desert place, try something, try this, try anything. God is listening. He is. Maybe this is your chance to give him a tiny fish or a single slice of bread and watch him work miracles with those things - turning them into something he can bless someone else with.
I’m not completely out of that desert place, but I feel better these days in the knowledge that God is indeed listening to me and he knows my every need even before I ask him.