He put a new song in my mouth, a hymn of praise to our God. Psalm 40:3a

Monday, February 27, 2017

Hearing The Voice of God

         I was talking with a friend this morning about changes they’d like to make in their life. Changes often affect more than just the person who is making the decision.  Depending on the situation, it can affect an entire family and sometimes even several!  It can be a hard decision when it involves more than one person. 

            After the conversation, I was left with prayerful thoughts about options and listening to God’s voice.  It is He who created us to be productive, yet wants us to remain aligned with His will.  We are told in His word “the sheep know the Shepherd’s voice.”  It’s important to separate emotion and self-will, to be quiet and still, to enable us to hear God’s voice through all the other thoughts pounding and clamoring for space in our head and hearts.

            Most of us want to be productive in whatever we are doing.  That’s been the mind set since time began.  In times long past, the pioneers and farmers produced the items they used.  They fashioned farm tools, spinning wheels, leather goods, hunted and grew food; built furniture and created supplies from the lumber retrieved from the forest. As need increased, iron and lead was produced, along with nails, and cast iron cook ware!  Then came automation and mass production, which really changed the complexion of society.

            Creating each of these items before the industrial revolution, took a fair amount of training and experience.  People relied on each other for the goods they could not produce.  They realized if they hadn’t relied on each other, they may have perished.  The same concept can be said about our spiritual life.  When we don’t rely on God we are, in reality, helpless and can perish! 

            When we don’t stay in The Word and prayer, we find ourselves filled with doubts and fears about what we can and cannot do.  We shrink from “what might be” and “what if?”  But God doesn’t want us to be like that.  We were created to hear his voice from the depths of our beings.  He wants to guide us to new heights.  Our new adventures can’t happen or at least be successful, if we don’t put our trust in him.

            God has given us gifts to share, with which to be productive.  Each person’s skill is unique to him, given his personality and how he chooses to use it.  This is true when we minister or when we are in the midst of a giant change of direction.  Often we look at the practical side of things and say, “that just can’t be done!”  But if God is molding us and transforming us to make such a change, we must rely on God to work out the details, even if in our finite minds, it doesn’t seem possible!

            When we see with the “eyes of God” into these situations, we can see God working on us and “growing us” into the persons we are meant to be.  We are made stronger when we recognize we must move forward, but stay aligned with him; and that we are not in control.  It is God.  He can make us fruitful and productive in ways we couldn’t have imagined.