Thursday, July 24, 2014

Hearing the voice of God

Luke 4:1 Read it yourself

Full of the Holy Spirit. In 3:22 Jesus was baptized and was praying. The Holy Spirit descended upon him and a voice from heaven said, "You are my beloved Son, with you I am well pleased." When Jesus returned from the Jordan that same Spirit led him into the wilderness.

You want the same clarity from God that Jesus had in these short few statements. No voice comes from heaven to you. At least not literally. If you did hear a voice, how would you know it was from heaven? Yet you have thoughts everyday that come from somewhere. Many, perhaps most, of them are your own, but certainly some thoughts are inspiration.

Charlie Tremendous Jones — 'You will be the same person in five years as you are today except for the people you meet and the books you read.'

Mr. Jones is tapping into this same idea. Inspiration is what you need in order to become something other than what you already are.

I imagine that Jesus grew up hearing about the circumstances of his conception and birth. I imagine that when he read the scriptures something within him resonated with the truth and he recognized words and thoughts that his human ears had never heard before. This phenomenon is not confined only to God's only begotten. This happens when you read a book or listen to other people speak.

God's voice is going to be clearest when the medium through which you hear him is closer to the truth. Reading the Bible or listening to a Godly person's words will provide better light than listening to an ass. However God is able to speak through an ass too - Numbers 22:30-31.

Why do you do what you do? Is there anything that you do in which it could be said, "led by the Holy Spirit you did such and such?"

You think you want to hear the voice from heaven but if you actually did you would respond like the children of Israel did at Mt Sinai, you would plug your ears and look around wildly for someone to listen for you and tell you what was said. Like that classic from uttered by Jack Nicholson's character in A Few Good Men "You can't handle the truth!"

It is the grace of God that keeps you from being exposed to the direct and fearsome awesome presence of the Holy One. The scriptures speak of mountains melting and forests being consumed before his presence (Nahum 1:5-6). Like a tsunami or a forest fire, the full presence of God would completely overwhelm your mortality. Your sin and rebellious heart would be opened and revealed in all of it's dark and evil tendencies. You would cry out for the rocks to bury you and hide you from the painful, searing, brightness in which no shadow is possible (Isaiah 2:20-21; Revelation 6:15-16).

It is God's grace that his voice is toned down to a scale in which it is possible to hear it and at the same time your choices are still possible. It is His grace that you live in a world where acting on faith is still something that you can choose. You live in a universe where love and beauty and change is possible. A place where who you are right now does not dictate who you can become.

What is God saying to you today?

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