We long for a quick exit from our “land between”, an instantaneous miracle that brings closure to our situation on a moment’s notice. With the psalmist David we cry out, “How long, O Lord? Will you forget me forever? How long will you hide your face from me? How long must I wrestle with my thoughts, and every day have sorrow in my heart?” As author Jeff Manion points out in his book The Land Between, “the Psalms can guide us in shaping articulate, honest prayers in desperate times.”
Yet this precisely is the time when God can do His deepest work in our lives through the miracle of perseverance, when God provides miraculous strength and endurance as we develop trust in Him and deepen our faith. Paul describes this total sufficiency of God in 1 Corinthians 4:7-9: “But we have this treasure in jars of clay to show that this all-surpassing power is from God and not from us. We are hard pressed on every side, but not crushed; perplexed, but not in despair; persecuted but not abandoned; struck down, but not destroyed.” This is a time where we’re call upon to experience God’s faithfulness, to put into practice what we know in theory.
God longs to bless us in our “land between”. Are we willing to open our hearts and lives to His work and provision while we are in a place we don’t want to be? James encourages us: “Perseverance must finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything.” (James 1:4)