|Good morning everyone,|
Our theme for this month: “The end of anxiety and despair”
Our Bible verse for today: “My sheep hear my voice, I know them, and they follow me.” John 10:27 (HCSB)
Our thought for today: “God wants to be heard and understood”
In my opinion, one of the most helpful resources ever developed to teach Christians how to be aware of God’s presence, develop a deep and intimate relationship with Him, and learn to hear His voice, is Henry Blackaby’s “Experiencing God: Knowing and Doing the Will of God”.
In that study we learn that although God can communicate with us in an infinite number of ways, the five ways He most commonly speaks to us in our day is from the Bible, in prayer, through circumstances, by the counsel of other Christians, and through the testimony of the church. And almost always, He will speak to us in more than just one of those ways. In other words, He will communicate with us and then He will confirm it.
Yesterday we learned that God wants to be heard by His people and He wants to be understood, but we have to be paying attention. We have to seek to hear from Him and we have to be attentive as we wait for Him to speak. The Bible is the primary way in which God speaks to us. He also speaks in prayer (but this is subtle and we have to be careful not to confuse our own feelings with the voice of God). God often uses our circumstances to show us His will, and He speaks through the counsel of pastors and mature Christian friends. God also uses the church as His megaphone. That can come to us through sermons, Bible studies, music, or even congregational votes of affirmation such as affirming our call into a ministry.
God speaks to us in all of those ways, but we do have to be seeking to hear from Him and we do have to be paying attention. Here’s a prayer that Dr. James Dobson (Focus on the Family) often prayed for himself: “Lord, I need to know what you want me to do, and I am listening. Please speak to me through the Bible, prayer, circumstances, friends, and the things that I read.”
One of the most helpful exercises we can engage in when we’re battling anxiety and depression is to write out our fears and concerns in the form of questions to God. Ask Him for understanding and answers. Then listen in all the ways we’ve considered today. God wants to be heard and understood, and He will answer, but are you listening? If you want to get better at hearing from God, I encourage you to get a copy of the study “Experiencing God”.
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