Last November leading up to Thanksgiving my sister, Shirley, wrote everyday on FB something for which she was thankful. I was challenged in my spirit to be more thankful and the thought came that it would be a challenge in 2010 to list everyday at least one thing for which I am thankful. I think this will be one of the greatest challenges of my life. I have plenty for which to be thankful, but there are days... So here goes.
I am thankful for the voice of God. When I was small I wanted to hear God speak or to see some supernatural manifestation of His presence. An evangelist would say something like “Raise your hands and wave them around; you just might bump into an angel.” I would stand in my seat and wave vigorously hoping for a brush with heaven. It never happened. In the Pentecostal environment there were ubiquitous references to God speaking to individuals. He revealed sin, promised healing, gave direction, and answered prayers. I wanted to hear His voice, to know He was real and He was aware of me.
I had to wait until I was seventeen for that experience. Since then I have heard Him speak to me on many occasions. He speaks with specific words. Once it seemed audible as though spoken into my right ear. Most often it is a simple clause or complete sentence formed in my innermost being. In my experience, God does not speak directly to me in response to questions or petitions, with the exception that on one occasion He did explicitly respond to an inquiry (prayed silently) through tongues and interpretation given by others. He speaks when I am not expecting Him to speak. Often it is during a time of prayer, but not always. His words change my direction or my theology. They are often corrective, but He has also spoken warnings and promises.
When He speaks I just know it is the voice of God. The thought is not what I was hoping for or expecting. It is not always pleasing, but it is always comforting. My Father in Heaven has His eye on me and He has a Word for me. I am thankful for the comforting, convicting, corrective, instructive, sovereign voice of God.
More on the voice of God tomorrow.
January 1, 2010