Tag: God’s voice

Priscilla Shirer, Catalyst 2011

Priscilla Shirer spoke at Catalyst 2011 in Atlanta. She leads Going Beyond Ministries. She spoke on the danger of “sleeping” through life and wishing it away.

Her mom and dad once said to her, “You don’t live here anymore, but your stuff is still here. You need to get what you want by December 9th. On the 10th, we’re getting rid of it.”

This exercise ended up being a lot of fun to her.

There was a box full of old journals, and it was fun to interact with herself…the Priscilla from a decade ago.

As she read through her journals, she realized that she had effectually slept through long seasons of life, as she noticed that she had wished away and raced through so many years of her life.

Her life seemed to be marked by the statement, “I cannot wait until…”

“If I’m not careful, I will never be fully present and engaged in where I am right now because you’ll keep wanting what’s yet to come. I’d been sleepwalking through whole seasons of life.”

In Scripture, so many times people have been derailed from the plan that God has from them right now, and that God’s not left even though there are many interruptions.

“I don’t want to wake up one day and say, ‘Surely the Lord was there with me, but I missed him.'”

Secrets for Sleepwalkers

1. Our eyes can be open to God’s activities even in the midst of discouragement.

Luke 24:13-35, we see that a couple of guys have just had their plans interrupted. Jesus is the guy that they’re hanging their hopes on, and he’s just been crucified. They’re’ not sure that the rumors about Jesus being raised from the dead are true.

But then we read, “And behold…” This word “behold” calls attention to a specific point. It emphasizes an idea and calls attention to a detail. These guys were in the midst of a “behold” moment, even though they were frustrated by their circumstances.

Your story might be about to change, but you don’t even know it.

Beholding is knowing something and seeing it with spiritual eyes even when others can’t.

“My sons love to swim, and we bought them goggles. But when they went underwater, they kept their eyes closed. They didn’t’ know that they had the equipment to see under water. And the same is true for us, because we have Jesus Christ.”

2. There’s a secret in going home.

Some of us believe that the pinnacle of our Christian experience is to be had in large gatherings and taught from the platform. But the pinnacle should be when you take what you learn in the pew and it makes a difference on the sidewalk in your community.

3. There’s a secret of silence, of controlling the words that come out of your mouth (v. 14-16).

In this passage, there are 7-8 verses where the disciples are just talking. Something is wrong when you’re with God and you’re the only one talking.

There’s probably a part of your life that you don’t really care for and in which you’re being interrupted. But in those frustrations, listen for God’s voice and experience His power.

Are you ready to hear from God?

 

Looking but not listening

My wife said something to me the other day.  I was in the other room, so I didn’t hear her.

Valid excuse, no?

My wife said something to me the other day.  I was right beside her, doing something else, so I didn’t hear her.

Valid excuse, no?

My wife said something to me the other day.  I was looking her right in the eyes, and I didn’t hear her.

Valide excuse, no?

No?

Have you ever done that?  You’re looking right at someone, and they’re talking and you hear what they’re saying, but at the same time you’re hearing none of what they’re saying?

I feel dumb saying, “I know you thought we were engaged in a good conversation right then, and I was even nodding my head, but I have no idea what you said.”

Ever done that with God?

We’re surrounded by God speaking.

In our Bibles.  In podcasts.  Sermons.  Songs.  Through our friends.  Our small group.  Books.  Movies.  Creation.

He is speaking through success.  Through failure.  Through closed doors and open ones.

And yet we don’t listen.  We have no idea what God is saying, or calling us to do.

 

So how do we actually start listening to what He’s telling us?

 

How to hear God’s voice

  • Read your Bible. God has spoken most clearly there, and He has guided people for centuries with the Truth found in the Scriptures.  Through reading more and more of the Bible, you begin to understand what moves the heart of God, where and how He’s working, and how your life can more closely reflect that of Christ.  I call that a win.
  • Listen to solid Bible teaching. Hopefully your church offers it.  If not, feel free to supplement with a Podcast from another church.  There are hundreds of great ones out there.  I listen to this one Matt Chandler HERE and Andy Stanley HERE. (though, thankfully, my church, Grace Community Church, offers amazing teaching).  Hearing the Bible taught and applied is a great way to understand what God may be calling you to do.
  • Serve. Serving others is a great way to get you outside of yourself, and remind yourself that you’re not the center of the universe.  It’s also a great way to find out what things you’re gifted at and where your passions lie.
  • Pray. Ask God to reveal to you what He wants you to be and do.  If you want to hear from God, ask Him to speak.
  • Listen to your friends. Asking those who know you well (especially those in your small group) and you to grow in your faith, to help you know what God may be calling you to do, can be incredibly insightful.  If your friends can be honest with you, they have probably seen God working in your life, and can help you know what things you may be gifted at (or not) that may be worth pursuing.
  • Spend some time enjoying beauty. Whether it’s in the form of nature, art, music, or movies, you can hear God speaking there, too.  I’m not promising an audible, booming voice, but God can move you, and speak to you, in significant ways when you acknowledge His role in creating those things.
  • Be still.  For me, this is probably the toughest one.  I struggle to be still and silent and patient.  (Psalm 46:10)

If you want to know what God’s calling you to do, both right now and in the future, try these things.  And when you get finished with these things, try them again.  And again.  And again.

 

Have you heard God speaking to you lately?

 

What’s He calling you to do?

 

 

 

 

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