A Desert Called Home
By Shandra Newcom of Boulder, co, USA
Jesus, full of the Holy Spirit, returned from the Jordan and was led by the Spirit in the wilderness, where for forty days he was tempted by the devil. -Luke 4:1-2NRSV
I was visiting with my spiritual director (a spiritual companion) when I shared these words, “I’ve lost my longing for God.” It felt as if I was broken open, alone, as if I was letting others and myself down. My director gently asked some questions that helped me better understand my feelings. She tenderly guided me through a prayer of openness that brought me to a place of comfort and gave me hope in the midst of disruption.
It is hard to speak painful words, especially when they are about one’s relationship with the Divine Spark that creates and loves us.
Sometimes God feels close…like breath, like heartbeat. Sometimes God feels distant…like top of mountain, like high cloud. When I spoke those words, I felt as if I was in the desert…tempted, lost. I felt as though I was alone, like I couldn’t find home.
Doctrine and Covenants 165 says, “Follow your soul’s yearning to come home to God’s grace and generosity. Let gratitude show you the way.” I was reminded of these words as I spoke with my director and joined her in prayer. I was also reminded that my “longing for longing” is enough for now; when I think about love, I’m truly grateful that in God, I’m home.
God, may my deep hope align with your deep vision. Release in me anything that keeps me from freely following your Spirit. Amen.
Invitation to Spiritual Practice
Breathe deeply as you enter a time of silence. Become gently attentive to what may be restricting you from faithfully responding to the divine invitation in your life. Are there priorities, attachments, tasks, or motivations competing for your response? What does freedom for God look or feel like in you this day?
Today’s Prayer for Peace
Engage in a daily practice of praying for peace in our world. Click here to read today’s prayer and be part of this practice of peace.