At this point in my life, I’m trying to listen to God’s voice and use whatever wisdom I’ve learned to make this portion of my journey useful. I’m just middle aged. I’m not dead or so I keep telling myself. I feel that I have a lot to give and I hope that I can get it all out before the curtain closes. Everyone has a song to sing, and I don’t want to go to heaven with my “music” still in me and my course unfinished.
If you’re like me, you want Christ in the center of your plans.
I am certain that the God I serve will not lead me in the wrong direction, but my struggle is to hear his voice. Different voices can turn you in too many different directions. In my struggle to understand, I try to remember what I have learned about God’s voice:
It’s never hurried or rushed.
It brings a settled peace because God is a God of peace and not confusion.
It’s not loud, so you have to meditate, listen real close and take the time to hear him.
It never makes the ugly side of Self feel comfortable or secure. If someone has done you wrong, the voice of God will never tell you to get them back. His voice will never speak evil things.
Sometimes we don’t hear the voice of God so clearly because of all of the other voices.
That’s why I thought I’d share how God has helped me.
Those other voices can be a spouse, a friend, a relative or even our own thoughts and understanding of “how things should go”.
What did God tell us?
For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, saith the Lord.
For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways, and my thoughts than your thoughts. Isaiah 55: 8-9
Yet, so often we confine God to a box. A certain sphere of containment. I believe that if more of us would listen to God alone, to direct our lives, the entire world would be in a better place. Why? For the simple reason that each one of us has something unique: a gift or talent, but because we have limited God to our expectations, the entire world is deprived of who we are.
We often confine God to a space that is no bigger than our faith.
How many times have heard people say “I wouldn’t do that if I were you” and they’ve confined you to their opinion and you backed off?
Well, I’ve had enough of that in my life. Haven’t you? If you haven’t yet, just keep living. It happens.
If your “yes” from God to move in His direction could affect this world, your city, your neighborhood for Christ, how awesome would that be? Les Brown mentioned this phrase “don’t let other people’s opinion of you become your reality”. God knows how to fulfill our need for purpose. You and I would spiritually die if we had no purpose. We are engineered to be trains that need a track to ride on. We thrive when we know that we are a part of something greater than ourselves. This is what propels all of us to do more.
But be warned. God’s voice may lead us where people don’t understand. In fact, you may lose friends and associates in your quest to follow God. It is almost inevitable that once God begins to use you for his purpose that you will have jealousy heaped upon jealously. Look at the stories of David (Saul) and Joseph (his brothers). People may think you are off base when your feet are in reality firmly planted. Expect that and prepare for it.
Everyone I have known that stays focused on Christ invariably goes through the breaking away process from negative associations and pessimistic people whose only response to vision is “why are doing that?” “is that necessary?” or “how are going to do that?”. They don’t realize that not knowing how to do a thing isn’t the problem. The solution is your willingness to learn.
So, if the Lord is telling you yes, the only person that can really stop the progress is YOU!
To move forward you have to loosen your ties (I mean that both ways literally and figuratively).
What’s wrong with tearing down everything and setting up a new building when the foundation is right? If God has been talking to you about walking in his will in a particular area, don’t let anyone stand in your way just because they don’t have the same vision. There are many people I’ve had great respect for in my life, whose vision for the future was limited. That doesn’t make them horrible people, just small in their thinking.
Think about it like this. If I’m nearsighted and need glasses, there is nothing you can do about my condition, except buy me a pair of glasses. And what if I refuse to wear them?
In that case, you just can’t help me at all.
Think of people with limited vision like this: They’re not bad people, they’re just nearsighted and refuse to wear glasses. Although these well-meaning people may be helpful to you in many areas, it doesn’t mean that they can guide you in every area of your life no more than a master mechanic with all his tools could help you with dental work.
Years ago a church counselor who was always good at giving me advice gave their opinion on a project I was planning to help female converts. This person did not think it would work at all and threw up a proverbial stop sign like a crossing guard. I could have stopped there, but I decided to see what the Pastor thought. To him, it was a great idea, God opened the door and allowed me to move forward. The point is that I would not have been able to expand my abilities and be a blessing to others had I listened to that one person.
Whatever God is telling you today. Do your vision. Make it count, and do it well.
- God said, “ye shall seek me and find me if you search for me with all your heart”. Jeremiah 29:3. Can we find more time to pray and read?
- When we listen to God, do we guard the inspiration we receive from Him?
- Inspiration from God can be doused with the water of unbelief and doubt. Write down ways to stay inspired. Keep a journal to remember when God has spoken to you.