God Is Speaking

rainbow

I was sitting at my desk, surrounded by books and notepads with my laptop nearby and my cup half full of that oh-so-delicious afternoon coffee.

There’s something truly wonderful about preparing to write a new book, something so deeply intimate about spending time with God in the stillness of a room as He guides and teaches you about things you know very little about but are excited to learn.

Before I go on and on, leaving you to feel as if you’re in a vague fog, I promise there’s a point to all of this for you.

I can’t tell you exactly what I’m researching for my next book. (For those of you who know me, it’s the “purple elephant” all over again.) You see, if I were to tell you I’m writing a book about a purple elephant, you might look at me like I’m crazy and question why I wouldn’t make it pink or polka-dotted. Then I would start to doubt my purple elephant and question all of my work. Not only that, I don’t want to stick my purple elephant in a padlocked trunk (no pun intended) in case he needs to be rewritten in the middle of the story as a flying potato with antlers and chicken wings. (Can you tell my heart is yearning to write fiction?)

So I have to be all hush-hush about this book I’m writing, but I can tell you one thing about it – there won’t be any flying potatoes as far as “eye” can see. 🙂

But I can share something about this process that might help you if you’re working on something close to your heart or embarking on a new journey (could this be mine?!) – when you ask God to help you tackle something that is so far beyond your own knowledge, capabilities, or confidence, He will tiptoe into the room with you, pull up a chair, and gently whisper to you. He will teach you through His Holy Spirit.

All you have to do is ask, be still and listen, and takes notes the best you can.

And should God choose to speak through something visual like a rainbow landing right in your backyard on an unusually warm day in January and teach you how it connects to the very question you asked Him earlier, grab your camera and do your best to stop giggling so you can get the shot. Just remember, the lesson doesn’t end when you capture the image; God can reveal the hidden layers, the depth of His lesson even while you’re brushing your teeth the next morning.

God is speaking, my friend. And the Holy Spirit is teaching. Can you hear Him?

“And after the earthquake there was a fire, but the Lord was not in the fire. And after the fire there was the sound of a gentle whisper.” (1 Kings 19:12 NLT.)

“Ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives, and the one who seeks finds, and to the one who knocks it will be opened.” (Matthew 7:7-8 ESV.)

“Be still, and know that I am God; I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth.” (Psalm 46:10 NIV.)

“But the Helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, he will teach you all things and bring to your remembrance all that I have said to you.” (John 14:26 ESV.)

The Cave

cave

God first gave me this article to write for The Outreacher, but now He’s wanting me share it here.  Someone must be hurting…  I’m praying for you, my friend.

Do you feel broken? Do you sense that things are not okay in your spirit and you don’t know how to fix them?  You’re not alone.  I’m with you in the brokenness, and I know God is with both of us.  That’s just the kind of awesome and faithful God we have.  He told me to “be real” when I started to write this because we need to peel away all the layers, the defenses, and even the phony masks to get to the truth.  Spiritual brokenness is painful.  But God wants you to know He is with you right now.

Being broken is like being in a very dark cave.  David hid in a cave while on the run from Saul.  Are you running or hiding?  I’m not either.  I think sometimes God allows us to have time in the cave to revamp our focus.  When we’re out in the bright light of our lives, there are so many distractions, so many things for our eyes to see, so many of our own senses to rely on that we sort of forget to lean on God.

But not here in the cave.  In the cave you can’t rely on yourself.  You can’t trust your own judgment and your own senses are even distorted.  You learn here that it is God who is truly trustworthy.

Protection. God just whispered that to me.  Time spent in the cave can also mean God is protecting us from something, an individual, or a situation.  I have to wonder sometimes if He’s protecting me from myself.  Maybe He’s protecting you from you.  Do you drive yourself crazy trying to figure everything out and fix it?  Do you let go of God’s hand and run ahead of Him because you just can’t wait any longer to see where He’s leading?  I do all of those things.  And the waiting, I’m learning, can be nothing short of excruciating.  Maybe being in the cave is teaching us to be still and remember Who it is that’s in charge.

God does a lot of teaching in the cave.  Remember, all the distractions and busyness are hushed as they’re left outside.  He wants more for you.  He wants more of you.  He wants you to hear His voice; what loving father wouldn’t?  So He teaches you to reach out to Him, to listen deeply in your spirit for the Holy Spirit’s leading.  He’s training you to have eyes that see and ears that hear in a place where your physical eyes and ears are practically useless.  And He’s nurturing your heart to be so tender you not only dream of Jesus while you’re asleep but while you’re wide awake too.

Yes, life will move quickly outside the cave and you’ll feel like you’re missing out.  But you’re not missing out on what God has for you.  Again, He has so much more for you.

Some may call to you, try to shine a light, throw you a rope, but not many will understand why you choose to stay here.  This cave is the place where you and God are meeting for a season, a time for you to learn total surrender, humility, and complete obedience.  Maybe you don’t feel like much is happening right now.  That’s okay.  Much is happening in your spirit as He transforms all of your brokenness into the complete vessel He created you to be.

And when the time has come, when God knows you are ready, He will gently take you by the hand and walk you right out of this cave and into the glorious light of a new dawn; a wonderfully new and powerful dawn.  God is going to use you.  Just be still and wait.  And know this, I’m waiting with you and praying for you too.

“Be still, and know that I am God.” (Psalm 46:10 NIV.)