The pastor at the church I was visiting was adamant. “God only speaks through the Bible.” He went on to explain that while God spoke through dreams, prophets, angels, and a “still, small voice” in the Old Testament, now that we have the completed Bible, Scripture is the only way God still communicates with us.
Pete and I were chatting with a friend, sharing stories about how we’d learned to trust God. So often we’re focused on what’s happening now that we forget to look back at the many years of God’s faithfulness and direction. As Pete related one major lesson he’d learned many years ago, explaining how it laid the foundation for so much of the ministry he had now, I realized that it’s a story worth sharing. I didn’t know Pete when this happened—I met him a month later—but it’s had a huge impact on my life. Maybe God will use it in your life, too. Continue reading
Does God talk to you?
The Bible is full of examples of God talking to people. Sometimes He used an audible voice, such as when Jesus was baptized: “This is my Son, whom I love; with him I am well pleased.” Other times He spoke through the prophets, although we don’t know how they heard His voice. He talked to Moses out of a burning bush. And one time, God even spoke through an ass! (See Numbers 22:28.)
The Urim and Thummim were used to cast lots, another way for the ancient Hebrews to know God’s will (1 Samuel 14:41 is one example). Gideon put out a fleece (Judges 6:36-40) to make sure he was hearing God correctly. Pete and I did too; w hen God asked us to move to Colorado, we asked for confirmation that we understood what He wanted us to do.
Pete and I are at a crossroads, faced with a decision that will have a major impact on our lives for at least the next few years. As you might expect, we’re asking God to tell us which way we should go. Is this an opportunity—or a distraction? Do we run toward it or run away?
I expect that most Christians have prayed to know God’s will. After all, it’s clear in Scripture that God wants us to ask, and then obey what He tells us. David had a long string of successful battles, but He always inquired of the Lord when facing a new situation. Sometimes God gave him an expected strategy, while other times He had a surprise in mind. But no matter how skilled a warrior he became, David always took time to ask.
I certainly appreciate it when God whispers in my ear, but there are times I’ve wished He had given me one of those ear trumpets; I can be so hard of hearing! I appreciate it much more when He speaks loudly and clearly.
A few months ago I wrote about a decision I was facing. At the end of that post, I expressed my frustration: “I’d like a postcard, please, God.”
A week later I wrote another post about my progress so far. I explained all the ways I’d sought God’s opinion on the matter, and that I’d made a decision to drop my involvement in a an organization at the end of 2011—giving me plenty of time to change my mind, should God speak up.
Well, here is the rest of the story.