Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Is that you, God?

I've been wondering, lately, about how to discern God's will in my life.  It's a tough thing to do.  It's tough because my will is so BIG and my thoughts are so LOUD they may be drowning out the voice of God.  So, if I can't hear God's voice does it mean he's not talking to me?  This is hard to say.

I know there is no way I would be able to hear the voice of God unless I took some serious quiet time.  From what I've learned, God is not the type to elbow into my life.  He is unbelievably patient.  He will wait.  A LONG time.  Time doesn't carry the same weight for God that it does for me.  In fact, I believe, since God created time he exists outside of time.  Even after I wrote it I'm still trying to wrap my mind around it.  I don't think I would be able to hear the voice of God while I'm at work and the phone is ringing and my boss is talking to me and I'm answering emails.  Nope.  I'm pretty sure those things would keep me from hearing him.  I don't think I can hear the voice of God while I'm watching tv or listening to music or watching a movie streaming on Netflix.  Nope.  I'm pretty sure those things would keep me from hearing him.  You may find this surprising, but I don't think I can hear the voice of God while I'm in my bible study.  I'm usually listening to what the others are saying or, worse, not listening to the others and thinking about what I want to say.  (btw, I know God can speak through others.  I've heard of prophets)  Finding quiet time to sit and listen for God is a discipline.  I know I have a hard time finding quiet inside and outside of my head.  My thoughts race about what I need to do or what I want to do.  I hear planes flying overhead.  I hear birds.  And on and on the distractions come.  I've heard God can speak through dreams.  I don't know about you, but sometimes I try to manipulate my dreams if I wake up a little during them.  And you know what.  These are the dreams I often remember.  I've also heard God can speak through images in my mind.  I think it may be awfully difficult to discern God through mental images.  I know, sometimes, if I've played too much Words With Friends, I can see the images of the game in my mind.  Maybe this is why it was so much easier for the patriarchs to hear the voice of God.  Not as many distractions.  Maybe?

If I want to hear the voice of God I have to learn to recognize it when I hear it.  I need to spend time in God's word and learn the sound of his voice.  I've heard that God's ways are not my ways and visa-versa.  So does that mean that if I have a wild and crazy thought, completely opposite to the way I usually think, that is the voice of God?  I don't think so.  I think that just may be my own selfishness popping up.  Do I think that if a scripture verse keeps coming to my mind, that's the voice of God?  I don't think so, either.  I remember a time in the bible when the evil one quoted scripture to tempt Jesus.  Yeah, I think that one knows all the words, he just doesn't have my best interest at heart.  I think if God were to speak to me through scripture he'd give me more than one verse and he'd assure me what he is asking of me is honoring to him.  So reading and learning scripture can help me recognize God's voice.  Maybe this is why it was so much easier for the patriarchs to hear the voice of God.  Less scripture had been written.  Maybe?

If God is speaking to me, I'm sure he would make sure I could understand him.  I don't think God talks over our heads or uses language we don't understand.  I think when he told Abraham to go and then told him to stop, Abraham understood what he meant.  He may not have understood why, but he understood what God was saying.

Lastly, if God is speaking to me, he wants me to obey him.  

So, what if I take the time to learn what God's voice sounds like by spending time in his word?  What if I take the time to spend in quiet reflection and prayer?  What if I do all that and I'm still not sure I'm hearing the voice of God?  If it was me, I'd wait.

I'm pretty sure when God speaks to me, I'll know it's him.  I'm certain when God speaks to me, I'll know what he is saying.  I won't have to decipher a code or anything like that.  And, I'm sure when God speaks to me I'll know exactly what I need to do. 

131.  Time to get the work done I need to get done
132.  Enough distractions in my life to allow me a break from difficult work
133.  A thick enough skin to allow the teasing of my co-workers to roll off my back
134.  An evening with nothing scheduled
135.  A little space heater under my desk to warm me on a chilly spring day after they've turned the heat off in my building


8 comments:

  1. I love the seeker in you more than I can say.

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  2. you nailed it as fara as needing to learn gods voice before we hear it...and eliminating some of the noise in our lives as well to truly get that quiet time...

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  3. I spent a lot of my life arrogant, not thinking I needed to hear him.  And yeah, I hear you about your will and thoughts being so strong.  Fun visit.  Thanks for taking the time to share your thoughts.

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  4. Finding time and place to sneak away to listen. Truly listen as the chaos of the world and thoughts of your mind are dismissed - it's then God comes in to speak in a quiet whisper. I want to hear too and yep, after we hear then there comes the obedience. Lord, let me be bold enough to go where you call! Blessings friend.

    http://www.positivelyalene.com/

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  5. oh my goodness girl. i loved this post. especially the first paragraph, but the whole thing hit home. (esp. the bit about bible study, and thinking about what i'm going to say next...) i used to run with music in my ears but now i use my jog for my quiet times. for my prayer times. and i practice listening then too. love to you. xo

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  6. You are right - sometimes it's in the being still and listening. 

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  7. Tara_pohlkottepressApril 12, 2012 at 6:45 PM

    yes...learning that God's view of time is different then mine... he will wait until I calm and can receive him.  great thoughts!

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  8. My HP is around me all the time.  There are no coincidences. 

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