“God never hurries. There are no deadlines against which he must work. Only to know this is to quiet our spirits and relax our nerves.”
― A.W. Tozer
Good Morning, Friends. It is just before ten in the morning here on the East coast along the shore of Little Rhody. Spring has been whispering sweet nothings in our ears here all week. The neighborhood mantra about yard work seems to be “I’m so far behind”. I have heard this from just about every neighbor in the hood while walking the dog through our fairly pristine, in actuality, tourist/college neighborhood. Truth be told, the only yard that falls short is probably ours! But, let me not digress or sulk about my lack of domestic and gardening giftedness.
We have been seeking the Lord through Journaling, and right about this stretch of the path you are either feeling rejuvenated in your quiet times and journaling, or a little lost.
Or dare I say, you are completely lost and sitting ON the path, arms crossed, feeling frustrated wishing someone would either:
a. pick you up and carry you
b. drive you the rest of the way
c. Give you a clear concise map, GPS, or anything that helps make the journey less painful
Well guess what? Consider this your Journaling Your Journey with Jesus pit stop.
I have come to sit with you while you rest, gain strength and remember why you started the journey to begin with; I have brought some fresh provisions, practical advice and a tad of heavenly perspective. You’ll be back on track in no time!
First, let me share a few things I know that will guarantee you don’t hear God. Or at the very least will make it hard to hear His still small voice speak into your life in the here and now. AND friends, Jesus does want to speak into YOUR here and now. THIS here post, might be ONE way.
Three Practical (impractically speaking) Tips for NOT hearing God:
1. Avoid opening and reading the written Word of God at all– BAM! 90 percent of The Holy Spirit’s communication is conveyed through Scripture. Since God has chosen to reveal Himself through this means primarily and it has been well-preserved throughout time and history, you basically are severely limiting the hearing of God’s voice to you generally, and specifically through the Holy Scripture. Scripture repeatedly supports itself in this fact in many places, Here’s one (Romans 15:4). Or just start with Psalm 119 and meditate on that for a week- that might help convince you.
2. Avoid silence always. I guarantee it will be difficult for you to hear God’s voice if you are constantly stuffing your quiet moments throughout the day with noise, noise, noise. I don’t care if it is Christian programming, if you are not taking in the word of God, and are starved for peace and quiet, you will be an anemic Christian even as you gorge yourself with Christian broadcasting. There is always time for quietness. It is a choice. I know some like to have background noise and there is a time and place for that, but again, if every time there is quietness and you cannot tolerate it, I am going out on a limb here and saying you might be drowning out the voice of God in your life. God does not want you to be numbed to your life, as difficult as it may be. He wants to show you that in all things He is present, not distant; available and compassionate towards you.
3. Avoid listening to the teaching of a Pastor or Minister. It’s one thing to occasionally fall asleep on Sunday while the Preacher is speaking (My Pastor is not reading this post, so that is a relief!) or miss a sermon, BUT when we do, I assure you we are putting a hand over one of God’s favorite ways of speaking to us. To sit under the teaching of a humbly, prepared mouthpiece for the Lord, is one way God can speak to us. Actually, the Holy Spirit will use and speak to the whole congregation in a somewhat unified way. This is possible because our God is Supernatural. Showing up with a prepared heart, ready to receive the message that God wants to deliver through His chosen instrument is one of God’s often overlooked regularly occurring miracles! Also, the message is for YOU…not your neighbor, husband, sister, friend. Although it is for them to if they are there. OK, moving right along.
All that being said, the top three ways to hear God are though reading, studying, meditating on The Holy Bible, finding pieces of quiet and cultivating quietness and a listening heart in an otherwise noisy world, and maintaining a teachable spirit by embracing the teaching ministry (recognizing God’s sovereignty over all) that is at your place of worship or seeking to grow in the grace and knowledge of Jesus Christ in community as He leads. I know there have been many who have been wounded in Christian community, and I say this carefully and not without empathy, God will lead you to a place of community. There is healing, there can be balance. Jesus longs to restore you and will do it. Follow Him. He is able to guide you who have His Spirit within. Trust Him, He is faithful. (1 John 4)
I want to share with you today a wonderful resource from the Discovery Series – which is a ministry of Our Daily Bread. I love these little booklets and have quite a collection myself! One in particular is my favorite. It is called The Lord is My Shepherd- Rest and Renewal from Psalm 23 by David Roper. I want you to take a moment and click the title above or click RIGHT HERE or on the booklet image after you are done reading my post. This little booklet is available in full (in PDF) online for free. You can also purchase your own copy in a variety of formats for a small fee. I love the direction of the message in this booklet and am (un) officially assigning you HOMEWORK! I pray it will bless you and was so excited to discover that you could read it online, I HAD to share.
Well, I hope you are starting to feel revived, and for those who are plugging along well, may God continue to cause you to hunger, thirst and cry out for Him! I am journeying in Colossians, and have added Psalm 1 as dessert. May you find Him as satisfying and delightful as He truly is!
Since, then, you have been raised with Christ, set your hearts on things above, where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God. Set your minds on things above, not on earthly things. For you died, and your life is now hidden with Christ in God. When Christ, who is your life, appears, then you also will appear with him in glory. Colossians 3:1-4
Catch me with these hashtags: #iamredeemed #onwardchristiansoldier and all my planner pals, you know how to get me. May God continue to blaze a trail for you.
Let me know, how you are doing in the comments below. Next week, God willing, I will be sharing some specific prompts for your journaling journey- they are an option to try if you feel led, absolutely opptional.
*Read my latest Quiet Time Poem: The Birds and Trees