Oh that I were as in months gone by,
I have a feeling, but the feeling is not a fact:
There is no better feeling than the presence of God, and there is nothing is worse than feeling God has left you! Job lost there feeling of God's presence. He felt that God had left him. BUT IT WAS JUST A FEELING! At the very time that Job felt abandoned by God, God was doing His greatest work in the life of Job, BUT JOB COULD NOT SEE IT!
The facts are in God's word. God never leaves His children:
The Lord Jesus says in John 10:28, "I give eternal life to them, and they will never perish; and no one will snatch them out of My hand." We may lose the feeling of God's presence, but God's child will never lose the presence of God.
God's lesson is, "Walk by faith not by feeling or sight."
Anyone can walk confidently in the sunshine, but God is asking us to walk confidently by faith in God His Word when the darkness comes. God wants to make you strong, and He uses the darkness to strengthen your faith. He wants you to be a child who can walk by faith not by sight.
An Illustration from Pilgrim's Progress
One of my favorite parts of Pilgrim's Progress is the Valley of the Shadow of Death. In this valley in the darkness, Pilgrim loses the sense of God's presence, but he is confident that this is the way God asks him to go. He meets other Christians running away from the valley, but he decides that this is the way of obedience to God.
Pilgrim's Progress: Pilgrim (Christian) passes through the Valley of the Shadow of Death:
When Christian had traveled in this disconsolate condition some considerable time, he thought he heard the voice of a man, as going before him, saying, "Though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil; for Thou art with me" (Psalm.23:4). Then he was glad, and that for these reasons:
First, Because he gathered from thence, that some who feared God, were in this valley as well as himself.
Secondly, For that he perceived God was with them, though in that dark and dismal state; and why not, thought he, with me? though, by reason of the impediment that attends this place, I cannot perceive it (Job. 9:11).
For me to live is Christ.