Have you ever felt like God is calling? It’s an odd feeling, like you’re missing something. And if you love the Lord and want to please Him, there’s a hunger that begins to develop when He calls to you. Really, I believe God ALWAYS wants to speak to us, but there are times when He has something specific He wants to relay to, go over, or deal with us about. When that happens, there are a couple things to do:
- Set aside real time to get quiet before the Lord – Shut off the phone, the TV, make sure you’re not interrupted. If you have to, wait till the kids are in bed. Shut off your brain voice, your million thoughts running through your mind. If you have to, go through each thought and give it to God until you come to a place of quietness of mind and heart to hear Him well.
- Look through the Word and find instances where God spoke to people (personally or through angels, prophets, etc.). Take those instances and find out how the people who received those messages were postured (spiritually) and try to put yourself in that posture.
Let’s look at a few of these instances where God spoke to people in the Word and their response and posture toward His call and conversation:
- Abraham – God speaks to Abraham, gives him a promise, and leads him to where he should go. Abraham obeys, then worships God.
- Moses – God comes to Moses in a burning bush. He calls to him and tells him to come near and take off his shoes, for he is on holy ground.
- Samuel – God calls to Samuel in the night. Samuel doesn’t recognize His voice, until the 3rd time when he receives instruction to say, “Yes, Lord. Here I am.”
- Mary – Angel comes to Mary to deliver a message to her from God. She responds with humility saying, “May it be as the Lord has said.”
Now let’s look at 5 other times God spoke to people, the various things He says, and how we should respond and consider His words to us:
- Orders – Adam/Eve: God told them not to eat of the certain tree, sharing it’s consequences. He also told them to be fruitful and multiply. Jonah: God told Jonah to go to Ninevah and warn them. Lot: God told Lot to leave with his family and not look back. God told Ezekiel to go to the plain and He would speak to him there. There are so many stories of God giving orders. All orders from God are for our good and for the good of others. He will never give orders that go against His character or His Word.
- Conviction – Cain: Cain’s offering to the Lord was wrong in every sense of the word. God called him out for it, but gave a chance to make it right and Cain decided in his anger to kill his only brother. God then spoke again, to bring consequence. How many times has God through His Holy Spirit convicted me and spoke to my heart that I needed to change or there would be consequences? How many times have I disobeyed or put off obedience? His conviction is good. It leads us to repentance and humility if we are truly after His heart.
- His Plans – Noah/Moses: Tells each of His plan to destroy/save. Sometimes God tells us the plan in part, sometimes as a whole, but either way, we must align with it or there will be consequences. His original plan for everything has already been given to us through His Holy Word, the Bible. Look through it to find the answers to all the questions about His plans: plans for marriage, for children, for Christians, for leaders, for workers; God has a plan (a good one) for all.
- Answers a Question/Prayer – David: “Go, smite the Philistines…” Sometimes God is gracious to give us an answer to prayer or a question we’ve been wondering. Sometimes He’s gracious and merciful NOT to give us an answer or to tell us no. We have to be okay with whatever answer He gives. But when we ask for wisdom (remember Solomon’s request? 2 Chronicles 1), He always answers yes and gives it in abundance (see James 1).
- Asks a Question – Saul/Paul: “Why persecutest thou Me?” There have been times when God has asked me a question: “Hope is?” “Am I not HIS Father, too?” Be prepared for God to ask questions of your heart that lead you to question your own motivations, desires, and your level of trust in Him. Be honest and meditative when you answer.
For the past couple hours today, I’ve felt that feeling of the Lord calling me to come away. I’ve been teaching off and on since about 11am and just finished now (at 1015pm), so I know the Lord understands my situation. But, I know He has something to say, so I will make sure to spend some alone time with him before bed tonight (if I go to bed – depends on when He is finished with my heart for the night). If ever you feel that calling, make sure you listen and answer well.
When we posture ourselves to hear the Lord and obey His calling, this is the outcome:
“Indeed, God speaks once, or twice, yet no one notices it. In a dream, a vision of the night, when sound sleep falls on men, while they slumber in their beds, Then He opens the ears of men, and seals their instruction, that He may turn man aside from his conduct, and keep man from pride; He keeps back his soul from the pit, and his life from passing over into Sheol.”Job 33:14-18
Matthew Henry’s commentary says this about those 4 verses: When God designs men’s good, by the convictions and dictates of their own consciences, he opens the heart, as Lydia’s, and opens the ears, so that conviction finds or forces its way in. The end and design of these admonitions are to keep men from sin, particularly the sin of pride.
Be sure that when the Lord is reaching out to you, you reach back in humility and obedience. Here I am, Lord. Your servant hears You. What would You have to say to me today? This should be our posture every moment of every day toward the Lord.
Be blessed. <><