Week 11 of our Daniel safari has us thinking about false prophets. It was a difficult chapter to read -- all that prophecy mumbo jumbo tends to go over my head. But Amber kept us focused. She has a way of doing that. (big puffy heart to you, His Girl!!)
Recognizing God's voice. It is the only way to steer clear of the false prophets of our day, who promise health, wealth, and prosperity. These are the men and women who are good at tickling our ears and making us feel all warm and fuzzy. They welcome everyone with open arms (as they should) and tell them that what they do is their own business and only bigots and hate mongers would dare call their lifestyles sin (which is a lie, direct from the father of lies..."there is no truth in him. When he lies, he speaks his native language, for he is a liar and the father of lies." John 8:44)
How do I know if what I'm hearing is God's voice? What if it's just my own little selfish desires manifesting themselves in my subconscious? What if it's the devil himself making me think it's God?
Dang. This is hard work.
I recently read Pricilla Shirer's book "He Speaks to Me." In it, she uses the example of God speaking to Samuel when he is sleeping. He keeps getting up and going in to Eli, thinking it was Eli calling him. Finally Eli says, "If you hear a voice again, say 'Speak, Lord, for your servant is listening'". Interesting to note that God chose to speak to a young boy instead of a seasoned priest....but then Shirer points out that it is the condition of the hearer's heart that primes it for hearing from God.
Ah. The condition of the heart.
So here sits Big Daddy and I, waiting to hear from God. Waiting to hear where we should go and what we should do. And you know what we've heard?
Whoever said "silence is golden" obviously wasn't waiting on a word.
So I did what any self respecting Baptist girl would do in a case like this.
I asked a preacher's wife.
Well, she's more than that. She's one of my best friends. But desperate times call for desperate measures and I had to call on her mad pastor's wife skillz.
She wrote me a long email. It was long. It was humbling. It was convicting. It was *not* easy to read. But it was truth, and that's what I needed. I didn't need (though I wanted) to hear warm smooshy good thoughts and vibes. I needed hard hitting Biblical truth, and she delivered.
God was waiting on me to get my heart right. He was waiting on some repentance. He was waiting on me to stop sinning and making excuses for my sin. Now, lest you think I'm over here smokin', drinkin' and sleepin' around, my sin list is not that exciting, but it is disgusting in God's eyes. I have put work above worship. I have served man more than I've served God. I am not the wife God wants me to be. I'm not the mother He called me to be. My heart is downright hard towards many people right now. I'm having a difficult time forgiving and moving forward.
So, as I say so often, I'm working on it. I've a long, long way to go, and in the meantime, I will keep on listening....
"Whether you turn to the right or to the left, your ears will hear a voice behind you, saying, "This is the way; walk in it." Isaiah 31:21