When God Speaks Through Other People, Part Five: Practical Application
In case you haven’t picked up on this, hearing God’s voice is sort of a passion of mine. I long to hear Him clearly and often.
Undoubtedly, unquestionably God.
Every time I hear Him, it stokes these fires all the more. I’m simply blown away that the God of the universe…the One who calls all the stars by name and tells the oceans where to stop…speaks to me.
And to you…let that sink in for a moment.
When I first suspected that God was speaking to me, it would usually happen something like this:
I would be praying or thinking about something specific and a thought or a scripture would come to my head. Then I would be listening to the radio or a minister a few days later, and I’d think to myself, “Hey, I was just thinking about that. Weird.”
Wait a minute…was that God? Or a coincidence? Or maybe I didn’t really think that at all?
That pretty much summed up the process. Sort of vague. Nothing earth-shattering.
Then one morning in prayer in 2001, kneeling in my family room in front of our big, brown chair, I poured my heart out to God about all kinds of deep, personal things. Suddenly, my mind was flooded with scriptures. Specific scriptures that addressed my needs. I looked up every one of them and was amazed at how specifically the verses addressed my prayers. Cool!!
“God…is that really You speaking to me? Cuz I really, really want to hear Your voice…and, well, it would just be awesome if You could confirm this to me in such a specific way that there would be no doubt that it is You.”
I felt an impression on my heart to journal everything I thought God was speaking to me. This was foreign territory for me…While I journaled on a regular basis, I never wrote a “God said” sort of entry. I was a little hesitant to do it, for fear it wasn’t God and it would sound silly…
Sound silly to whom, you may ask? I don’t really know. The people who will read all my journals after I die, I suppose.
So I challenged myself to write everything down in that prayer session that sounded like it might be God speaking to my heart…every scripture, every phrase, every key word. Everything. I ended that prayer time with a sincere request to God to please confirm His voice…if, in fact…I heard His voice.
I still wasn’t sure.
The next night I went to hear my friend Renee speak. Let me tell you a little about Renee. Remember the qualifications of an “expert” we talked about in Part Two, Expert Selection? Well, she is the poster child of an Expert. I had the privilege of sitting under her teaching in an adult Sunday School class in 1998, and immediately recognized she was a woman of the Word. That’s sort of an understatement. She was a LOVER of the Word. And every time she prayed for me, she prayed specific things that only God could have revealed to her. I was always like, “Whoa…how did she know that?”
Anyway, this is who I was now going to hear speak. I sat down at my seat, opened my journal to the pages in question, and opened up my heart to see what God would say through Renee, pen in hand.
This is no exaggeration…
Every single scripture, every single key word and every single phrase God spoke to me in my prayer time, God also spoke through Renee that evening. I still have that journal…with all my scribbles writing “CONFIRMATION” in the margin.
Absolutely true story.
I knew at that moment, I was on to something. God was speaking to me. I could hear Him. Oh my goodness…do you know what that means?
GOD WAS SPEAKING TO ME AND I COULD HEAR HIM!!!!!!!!!!
Is that insane, or what?
Here’s another true story. A few months later, still praying in my living room in front of the big, brown chair, now asking God to help me to hear Him even more clearly. And still asking Him to confirm it when I do for fear that I’m not led astray or deceived in any way, I cry out to God.
That week, a guest minister comes to our church. A man I do not know. A man from Costa Rica, who does not speak English well enough to preach without a translator. A man named Pastor Soto.
So, I go to church and sit near the front. From the beginning of the sermon, this man is clearly prophetic. I hadn’t ever seen anything like it before. He was calling people forward in our tiny congregation and encouraging them about specific things God had done with them, and would do in them and through them. It was amazing. There wasn’t a dry eye in the place. God’s presence was almost tangible. After hours of ministering to most of the congregation, the service ended and it was time to leave. Encouraged that God was speaking to others, but admittedly disappointed that God didn’t speak to me, I slipped out the back door.
Just before I could exit the building, I felt someone gently grab my arm. I turned to see Pastor Soto, obviously anxious to catch me before I left. In very broken English, he spoke these words:
“You hear the voice of God. When you are praying in your living room by the chair at night, He speaks to you, and you hear Him.”
Even as I type this it blows my mind and brings tears to my eyes.
My profound response????
Do you know what that means?
GOD WAS SPEAKING TO ME, AND I COULD HEAR HIM!!!!!!
Man oh man! There was no turning back after that. For every “false” or “errant” word I’ve received through someone in the last ten years, God has spoken hundreds of “true” ones.
God clearly and profoundly speaks to me through other people, all the time.God has used friends, ministers (both personal and those through radio and TV), book authors, musicians and my own children to clearly confirm time and time again what He is speaking to my heart. It is now an every-day occurrence.
And the little practice of journaling what I hear Him saying and expecting confirmation? Well, I still do that..all the time too. My pastor, Tim Parish, and other ministers at New Life Church have repeatedly confirmed, verbatim, something God had spoken to me during the week. (So much so, that Pastor Tim and I have a running joke that he actually reads my journal for sermon ideas.)
The lesson today is that if God can speak to a stay-at-home mom in front of her big brown chair in the middle of her family room…
a girl with lots of weaknesses and issues…
a girl with insecurities and fears…
a girl who doesn’t know as much Scripture as she’d like…
a girl who struggles to keep her temper in check…
a girl who often disappoints and hurts those whom she loves the most…
a girl who is clearly far from perfect in every way…
If He will speak to her and take the time to confirm it through a Sunday School teacher in a Friday night prayer meeting and a Pastor from Costa Rica in broken English…
Then guess what??
GOD WILL SPEAK TO YOU AND YOU WILL BE ABLE TO HEAR HIM!!!!
It still blows my mind…
p.s. Check out the sidebar for lots of new entries, especially the link to Baby Isaiah’s website. He is having lung surgery soon and needs your prayers.
I sit here, reading your post, with smile on my face saying “yes”. No other words to express or explain.
Thank you for the simple yet very WOW truth of a very personal and intimate God who hears and responds.
Thank you for your prayers and words on my blog. It is a trying and unexplainable time, but as I read your post I know God is speaking to me even in the struggle. Thanks.
it's my first time here. i was just writing a post on how i heard God spoke to me last night. God truly does speak to us and if we give time to listen we can actually hear Him.
God bless! i'm so encouraged.
Within this past year I have known God speaks to me through others. I get excited each time it happens. 🙂