I’ve said, in these past days, that you need a companion or guide to help you through your exile. I hope this series has served that purpose. One person that has helped me is Richard Rohr.
Another guide for me has been Oswald Chambers in his devotional, My Utmost for His Highest. He talks about exile as a darkness:
At times God puts us through the discipline of darkness to teach us to heed Him. Song birds are taught to sing in the dark, and we are put into the shadow of God’s hand until we learn to hear Him…
Have you seen your exile as that…a discipline…a time of intense teaching/training? Or has it just been a time of disappointment?
When you are in the dark, listen, and God will give you a very precious message for someone else when you get into the light. Oswald Chambers
When you are in the dark, you lose sight of what was once so important. When a small candle burns, suddenly it becomes the most important thing to you, drawing all your attention. That’s exactly what God wants to accomplish in exile. He wants his light to become your focus while everything else fades to black.
Exile is meant as a place to detach from everything unnecessary in your life so you will attach yourself fully to God. As you attach yourself to God you can let go of the things you felt were so important to your survival. It’s one thing to talk about God and faith. It’s another thing to live it. Exile helps you live out what you’ve been speaking for years. If there was a better way to effect this change, God would use it. But there’s not.
In the book of Hebrews, the writer refers to the priest in Genesis that met Abraham (Melchizedek):
Without father, without mother, without genealogy, having neither beginning of days nor end of life, but made like the Son of God, he remains a priest perpetually . Now observe how great this man was to whom Abraham, the patriarch, gave a tenth of the choicest spoils. Hebrews 7:3,4
Melchizedek was without everything that typically gives one their identity. His only identity was as a priest of God. Because of it, he was called “great.” Are you willing to undergo that kind of a stripping to obtain that same identity?
Oswald Chambers offers this final insight:
Are you in the dark just now in your circumstances, or in your life with God? When you are in the dark, listen, and God will give you a very precious message for someone else when you get into the light.
How does that land on you? Is it hopeful or does it just make you shake your head and say, “Right now I’m not concerned about having a precious message for someone else. I’d just like to make it through one day happy.” Be honest.
What is it that God might be teaching you in the darkness that you could share one day in the light? Please take a minute to comment below and click the share buttons.