SPEAK TO ME, I’M LISTENING
[Listen to: Kari Jobe – Speak To Me while reading the rest]
We live in a fast-paced world, with social media of all sorts, online teachings, advertisements of every kind and an infinite list of books on any topic to download with the click of a button. If you are unsure of something, just search the internet and you will find endless articles about that specific topic. The amount of teachings available is mind blowing. And most of the time our ears, eyes and mind are receptive to all the information without even thinking twice. All these things go in and get entangled inside of us, and it makes us numb for God’s voice.
But sometimes we stop for a second and think of our own eternity. What does it look like? I mean, this life that we are living cannot possibly be it? This fast-paced race to get to our dream destination cannot possibly be this mindless (and sometimes “mind over full”) routine? It is a little bit overwhelming to think that my existence is not solely for my own needs and wants but that we are here for something far greater than our own minds can perceive.
2 Cor 5:7 TPT
-for we live by faith, not by what we see with our eyes.
Rom 12:2 AMP
And do not be conformed to this world [any longer with its superficial values and customs], but be transformed and progressively changed [as you mature spiritually] by the renewing of your mind [focusing on godly values and ethical attitudes], so that you may prove [for yourselves] what the will of God is, that which is good and acceptable and perfect [in His plan and purpose for you].
Many of us are struggling to be still in front of God, just sitting and listening. I desire to live in such a way that nothing in this world should take my complete focus off of what is pleasing to God. I want to be so tuned in to Him that His voice is the only voice guiding me. With some effort and willpower on my part (especially with my lack of concentration and hyperactivity brain activity – let’s raise hands, who can relate to that?), and a whole lot of Holy Spirit guiding me, warming me up from the inside and giving me revelations, I sometimes find myself leaning on His chest, with my ear right against His heart.
How many times have you asked God to reveal to you what is on His heart and He almost immediately starts unpacking? This is one of my favorite things about God. This Almighty, Holy God, the One who created the heavens and earth, can whisper so gently and lovingly to me and He knows so well what I need and desire. I marvel every time a scripture stands out to me and I can just feel the Holy Spirit’s excitement with me. In recent weeks I started seeing a theme forming of what is on God’s heart in this season.
Judges 6:6-10 AMP
So Israel was greatly impoverished because of the Midianites, and the Israelites cried out to the Lord [for help]. Now it came about when they cried out to the Lord because of Midian, that the Lord sent a prophet to the Israelites, and he said to them, “Thus says the Lord , the God of
Israel, ‘I brought you up from Egypt and brought you out of the house of slavery. And I rescued you from the hand of the Egyptians and from the hand of all who oppressed you, and drove them out before you and gave you their land, and I said to you, “I am the Lord your God; you
shall not fear the gods of the Amorites in whose land you live.” But you have not listened to and obeyed My voice .’ ”
What stands out for me in the above scripture is that many people cry out to God for help, and God helps them now. They even come closer to God but after the worst is over people will turn back to their old ways. They are going to get lazy again and go back to their old comforts. I found myself wondering why some stay on the right path, growing into mature Christians, and why others simply don’t. And God gave me this:
Why do you call Me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ and do not practice what I tell you? Everyone who comes to Me and listens to My words and obeys them, I will show you whom he is like: he is like a man building a house, who dug deep and laid a foundation on the rock ; and when a flood occurred, the torrent burst against that house and yet could not shake it, because it had been securely built and founded on the rock. But the one who has [merely] heard and has not practiced [what I say], is like a [foolish] man who built a house on the ground without any foundation, and the torrent burst against it; and it immediately collapsed, and the ruin of that house was great.
Here the people are also calling out to the Lord in their time of need. Yet, what good does it do if one calls on the Lord in a time of need, but inevitably turns again to their old ways when their lives are back to normal and things are looking up again? “But the one who has [merely] heard and has not practiced [what I say], is like a [foolish] man who built a house on the ground without any foundation …”
1 Corinthians 3:11 TPT
For no one is empowered to lay an alternative foundation other than the good foundation that exists, which is Jesus Christ!
Now, this is what I understand:
1) We need to listen to and obey God’s words; and
2) We need a good foundation, which is Jesus.
I know so clearly when I call on the Lord, how the Holy Spirit pursued me and nudged me in the right direction. (Every single time). He transforms me into a new person by changing the way I think, renewing my mind, so that I may discern what is good and acceptable and what is the perfect will of God. (Read also Romans 12:2 ).
Those who fall away again, do not listen to the Holy Spirit. Their eyes remain closed, and their hearts remain hardened. But why do some listen to the Holy Spirit’s guidance and act on His voice, and others don’t? What is the missing piece? It wrecked my brain to such an extent that I
could not sleep at night. It made me feel helpless, so I started reading Bible verse after Bible verse to find an answer. What I discovered was that He wants a personal and intimate relationship with every single person. He expressed this by sending His only Son to die for us while we were still sinners (Romans 4:8).
I suddenly found myself alone on a small wooden boat on the ocean. The water was rocking this small boat from side to side and I felt unsafe. I was losing control and started to panic a little. How did I even end in this boat, on the water, alone?
In this moment I realised that it is so easy to fall into the trap of over-analyzing everything, and be caught up in my own emotions. So I took a deep breath and closed my eyes. And as I sat there in that unstable little boat, I clearly understood that there are just some mysteries that are not yet to be revealed. I realized that I needed to get out of this unstable boat and I had to reset my focus on my foundation, which is Jesus. I had to get back to the point where my ear is firmly against His chest, waiting on Him.
-if only we hold firm our newborn confidence [which originally led us to Him] until the end
I cannot, in my own power, help anyone obey God’s voice. I cannot design anyone’s house for them. I cannot dig their foundation.
I can, however, point them to my Architect, the original Designer. The One who created the heavens and earth. The One who, so gently, whispers to me in which direction I should go.
Luke 24:30-31 AMP
And it happened that as He reclined at the table with them, He took the bread and blessed it, and breaking it, He began giving it to them. Then their eyes were [suddenly] opened [by God] and they [clearly] recognized Him;
You see, they did not realize that Jesus was right there in their presence until they took communion. (“…, He took the bread and blessed it, and breaking it,”) As they took communion, they set their thoughts and mind on Jesus (they considering Him). And at that moment, their eyes opened.
So, when you decide to build your house, why don’t you consider Jesus to be your foundation? Set your mind on Him (consider Him) that the eyes of your hearts may be enlightened so that you will know and cherish the hope to which He has called you.
Ephesians 1:18 AMP
And [I pray] that the eyes of your heart [the very center and core of your being] may be enlightened [flooded with light by the Holy Spirit], so that you will know and cherish the hope [the divine guarantee, the confident expectation] to which He has called you, the riches of His glorious inheritance in the saints (God’s people),
Written by Nanje Ravenscroft