Edie over at Rich Gifts is doing her weekly random question. But I tell you her questions are anything but random. I think it should be "deep questions" or "important questions" but certainly not random. In any event, her questions this week is:
How do you recognize when God speaks to you?
God speaks to me always, sometimes, and rarely.
Always...I see God in everything and always think God is talking to me. Just read my blogs last week. I heard him saying "Be Set Apart for Me!" "Persevere in My Name!" and "I am the Resurrection and the Life!" I also hear him in the bible. I read the verses and relate them to my life. I check my thoughts against the bible. Are they accurate? I once worked with someone who said God said they could have sex before they got married. You know, if you check that against the bible, it just isn't so. I think that person needs to have their ears checked, or find out who is whispering those lies (Satan). I try to always test what I think against the bible to make sure I'm not confused by Satan who disguises himself as an angel of light and is the father of lies.
Sometimes...When I pray for specific answers, I don't always get them. But sometimes I do. It was important to me that my stepmom attend my daughters baptism. But she said she wouldn't go if my mom went. I couldn't not invite my mom. I just couldn't. As I sat in the rocking chair praying and crying for God to work it out, the phone rang. It was my stepmom saying she had thought it over and would attend. I know God changed her heart. You would to if you knew my mom. For my stepmom to attend, it was huge. There are lots of examples of times I prayed and nearly instantly got a response. But other time, I either didn't get an answer for a long time, or perhaps at all. (I've prayed for years for my mom to stop drinking, to be a mom, she never has). Maybe the answer was "no," in this case. Anyway, I don't always hear the answers, or at least the answers I'm looking for.
Rarely...Hearing the voice of God. I'm always in awe of folks who say "God told me....." Really? It's practically impossible to believe. I do believe them. But I wonder why God has a steady conversation with some, but not me. I thought I was his favorite? (just kidding - there is a t-shirt I saw that says "GOD LOVES YOU, BUT I'M HIS FAVORITE." I always joke to ADHD-Jo, my sister, that I want it.) But God doesn't talk to me in voice. Except once to my heart. I had been reading my least favorite bible story, one I didn't understand, but thought I did. I went into deep prayer and was crying and telling God I didn't understand why he would make the story that way because it just didn't make sense. I was in such deep meditation it was like I was nearly asleep, and suddenly God answered me. It was amazing. I got the true answer of the bible story. I understood it with clarity. I wept and asked for forgiveness for misunderstanding God. It was so incredible. I didn't hear a voice that was recognizable, but yet I knew the entire answer! One day I will blog on this whole story. I have actually submitted it to P31 magazine and am hoping they will publish it. If not, then I will share it here.
My opinion is that God is always speaking to us. We just have to listen. We also have to fight to not be deceived by Satan who whispers those lies in our ears. To do that, you have to be familiar with the Word of God (the bible) and then you can recognize his voice.
Exodus 15:26 -- He said, "If you listen carefully to the voice of the LORD your God and do what is right in his eyes, if you pay attention to his commands and keep all his decrees, I will not bring on you any of the diseases I brought on the Egyptians, for I am the LORD, who heals you."
Psalm 29:3 -- The voice of the LORD is over the waters; the God of glory thunders, the LORD thunders over the mighty waters.
Job 37:5 -- God's voice thunders in marvelous ways; he does great things beyond our understanding.