Have you ever wondered if God really wants to speak to you? If so, why doesn’t He do it more often? And how does one begin to actually hear His voice?
Jeremiah 33:3 tells us that God will answer us when we call upon Him, showing us things we don’t know, and John 10:27 says that His sheep hear His voice. As these verses make clear, God really does want to speak to you! He wants to guide you, give you wisdom, and show you things that you need to know when you need to know them. To really begin to hear His voice, however, you need to take the time to listen to Him!
How often do we get so caught up in our busy lives that we neglect to spend time with God? And when we do spend time with Him, how often do we pause, just sit there for a while, and listen for His voice? Think about it like this – if a friend kept on trying to call you but you never picked up the phone, or if you were talking to them and never let them get a word in edgewise, how would you ever hear what they were trying to say to you? It’s the same with hearing from God. If we want Him to speak to us, we have to take the time to quiet ourselves and actually listen to what He is trying to say.
Do you want to hear God’s voice? If so, I challenge you to ask Him to speak to you, then take even just 5 or 10 minutes by yourself to just be quiet, and listen for what He has to say. If you have a difficult time with this, try turning on some worship music to help you to focus on God, and what He wants to say to you.The more you listen, the more you’ll begin to hear His voice, and experience His guidance in your life!
When you accepted Jesus as your Savior, you became a child of God, and He became your Heavenly Father. Guess what?!? He LOVES having you as His child! He doesn’t just tolerate you, putting up with you only because He has to. He delights in calling you His! It is what He wanted all along!
How can you know that this is true? By taking a look at Ephesians 1:4-5, which states that through love, God predestined us to be adopted as His children, and that this was both His will and pleasure. Think about that – from the very start, God desired and intended for you to be His!
When you make a mistake, God doesn’t shake His head and wonder what He got Himself into when He made you a part of His family. When you’re going through a tough time, He doesn’t change how He thinks about you. When you fail, He doesn’t walk away from you, or wish that He could do so. At all times, on both the good days and the bad days, He rejoices that you belong to Him, and desires for you to go even deeper in your walk with Him!
As God’s child, you are loved, wanted, cherished, and treasured. You are a valued part of His family, whom He loves to call His own. Dare to believe it!
Are you good at receiving? Or do you have a difficult time accepting something as a free gift?
Sometimes, it can be hard for us to allow others to do things just to bless us. When we go out for coffee with a friend and they want to pay the bill, we insist that we must pay for our own beverage. When someone we know tries to give us a gift, we tell them that they really didn’t have to get one for us. We make the simple task of receiving what is freely given to us into a complicated matter involving lots of going back and forth. Our acceptance is more grudging that gracious, because we feel awkward simply taking what we are being offered, thanking the giver for their kindness, and allowing them to have the joy of blessing someone they care about.
This difficulty in receiving can easily transfer over into our relationship with God. He has so many good things He wants to give us, that Jesus paid the price for us to be able to have, but there’s one catch – He offers them to us as free gifts, which must be received, not earned. This is actually good news for us, because we can never be good enough to earn God’s blessings anyways. However, we still like to try. We have a hard time accepting God’s good gifts as freely as they are given. We come up with all kinds of excuses of why they can’t be for us, when all the while the only thing God is asking of us is that we would just receive what He is offering to us.
God loves seeing His children enjoy all that He has for them. It brings Him joy when you receive His blessings as the free gift He intends them to be. You can’t earn them, so to receive them is the only way they are ever going to be yours. Overcome your difficulty in accepting what He offers you with a thank you, and become good at receiving from Him!
What are you in need of today? In what area do you need God’s supply? Don’t be afraid to come to Him with your request. His supply is far greater than any need that you may be facing!
In Luke 9:10-17, the people Jesus was teaching were in need of food. There was only 5 loaves of bread and 2 fish available to them at the time. This was not near enough food to feed the 5,000 or more that were present. Jesus had the people sit down anyway. He gave thanks for the food, distributed it, and there was enough for all of them to eat until they were satisfied, with 12 basketsful left over.
In this situation, it look impossible for the people’s need to be met. After all, who ever heard of feeding a whole crowd with just a few loaves of bread and a couple of fish? Jesus did the impossible anyway, providing more than enough for all who were present. Though their need was great, God’s supply was greater still!
The same holds true in our lives today. No matter what our need, regardless of how great or small it may be, God is more than willing and able to supply it. When you present your request to Him, ask in faith, knowing that you will receive what you are lacking!
Who are you are in the sight of others? How do they see you? Who are you in your own sight? How do you see yourself? Most importantly, who are you in God’s sight? How does He see you?
So often, we place a great deal of our time and focus on how others see us. We strive to measure up to some undefined standard so that when they look at us, they like what they see, and think we have it all together. This can be wearying, and greatly discouraging when someone says or does something that lets us know we’ve failed in our objective. Other times, we focus on what we see when we look at ourselves. Often, this entails feelings of guilt, shame, or condemnation as we think about our flaws, failures, and all of the mistakes that we make. It’s time we start to place our focus on something else, instead – how our Heavenly Father sees us, and who we are in eyes!
How does God see you? He answers this question clearly for us in Colossians 1:22, which states that through Christ, He has reconciled us to present us in His sight as holy, without blemish, and free from accusation. To Him, we are holy – His righteous, set apart, specially chosen sons and daughters. When He looks at us, He doesn’t see our faults and failings as we do, and as others around us often may. He sees us as totally without spot or blemish! The accusations that others make against us, or that we make against ourselves, aren’t a part of how He views us. He sees us as free from accusation! If this is how God sees you, why live a life filled with condemnation and regrets?!?!
Stop focusing on how others see you. Turn from your view of yourself. Begin to see yourself as your Heavenly Father sees you according to His Word, and live an overcoming life, filled with the victory He has made available to you through His Son’s death on the cross!
Does it ever seem like God’s far away? Have you ever gone through a season where it seems like He’s off in the distance somewhere, and you’re not sure how to get near to Him again?
If you’ve ever felt that way, take a look at Ephesians 2:13. It says that we, who were once far from God, have been brought near to Him through Jesus’ blood. In other words, because of what Jesus has done, we can draw near to God. Jesus gave us the right to be close to Him at all times by paying for it with His own blood!
One of the primary reasons we at times may feel like we’re at a distance from God because of wrong things we have done. After all, if we’ve blown it, how can we draw near to the Perfect One when we ourselves are so far from perfect? The answer? What Christ has done for us!
All throughout the Old Testament, mankind was kept at a distance from God. At the cross, everything changed. Jesus, though He was perfect, took our sins and imperfections upon Himself. Because of this, if we believe in Jesus, we are made righteous in God’s eyes (Rom 3:23). What Jesus did for us guarantees us God’s permanent presence in our lives at all times, regardless of our actions.
Know that even if God feels distant, He’s not! He’s right by your side, and He’ll never leave you. Let the knowledge that Christ gave His life so that you could live close to your Heavenly Father obliterate any sense of distance you may feel between yourself and Him!