Does God ever speak to you? Does He draw your attention to something randomly? Do you hear Him?
In a recent blog, I wrote about my self-esteem issues and how they negatively impact my relationship with God. This includes my ability to hear and be led by Him.
I cannot tell you that I’m one of those folks who hear from God every day. I have friends who say that they do. I just honestly don’t. But I’m not suggesting that He isn’t talking to me, it’s just that I still don’t know how to listen.
This morning a very old song that we used to sing in Sunday School when I was a child popped into my head. It sort of amused me with its cheesy melody and clichéd lyrics. The song goes like this:
The lyrics are repetitive but for a kid, well, we could remember them!
So why did this song randomly pop into my head and play over and over and over again? I didn’t really think about it honestly. I had my Isagenix shake for breakfast and headed out the door.
In the truck, I had been listening to Dr. Chuck Missler’s 66/40 broadcast on the way to and from work. If you have time you should subscribe and listen to this awesome teaching podcast. But today, I felt like listening to music instead. I have a playlist with lots of contemplative music on it from bands like Daniel Amos, The Violet Burning, Hillsong United, Chris Tomlin, The Choir etc. Chris Tomlin’s song “Our God” began playing. What a great tune this is. I began to think about the words as they streamed by… Our God is greater, our God is stronger, God you are higher than any other, our God is healer awesome in power, our God… and if our God is for us then what can ever stop us, and if our God is with us then what can stand against. So much truth in there.
I began to focus on His power and how there is NO reason to fear all the things that are up against me. My God is stronger. As I was meditating on this, that silly song popped back into my head… The joy of the Lord is my strength. And this time it clicked. God is trying to tell me something.
See, I’ve been dealing with a bunch of issues lately. The one at the forefront of my mind right now is health. I’ve got a few nagging health issues that are causing some pain and worry. I’m trying to heal up from GERD where my vocal chords and throat have been harmed. That pain makes a worrier like me fear that I’m having a heart attack half the time. Any pain in the chest area makes me certain that I’m dying in a day or two. Also, my shoulder is in a lot of pain since injuring it in the gym about a year ago. I’ve had x-rays but they want to do an MRI to see if it’s rotator cuff… This would require surgery and I’m not keen on that, so I’ve just been living with it. But it seems to get worse and worse. There are a few other health issues besides those too. So I’ve been frustrated and concerned about these things. Especially as I am eating better and going to the gym (for just cardio). I’ve lost 10 pounds so far in 2013. I want to continue this trend.
All of this can weigh on your mind and soul day after day. I do pray about it every day. But I still take on all of the care and worry about it. Honestly, I feel tired. But I keep moving because that’s what we do.
So what is God saying to me? He is greater, He is stronger, He is healer, He is awesome in power and my taking joy in Him will be my strength. It’s not as hard as I used to think. To find Joy in Him I can do these things:
1) I must learn to recognize Him as God in all areas of my life, not just the ones I feel like I should be handling. Not that we shouldn’t take care of ourselves, but that we have to recognize that He is sovereign in our lives.
2) I can surrender my will and my life to Him. Why can’t I recognize that the time I spend worrying and meditating on real and borrowed troubles is time that I am not focusing on His power and His sovereignty? God has a perfect will for each of us. I want to know what that is, don’t you?
3) I need to fill my soul with worship and admiration of Him. To take on these worries and let them dominate my thoughts all day is to give them the place of God. We’re not called to be ostriches and bury our heads in sand. Rather we are called to a greater purpose, a greater kingdom. In this kingdom, Jesus Christ is the ruler. He will guide us in our days if we can nourish our relationship with Him. Worship reminds us of His glory, power and love.
4) I need to spend time praying about the things that worry me. Every time the worry pops into my head, I need to pray about it. I must involve the Lord in my cares. Because if it affects us, He cares! The other dynamic about prayer is that our hearts are changed as we pray. While we pray for one another, we invest love in one another. God works mightily through this and especially in our own hearts.
I want to be an effective Believer. I want to be obedient. I want to listen to Him and not my worries. I want to be healed and I want others to be healed. I want God’s will for me in all areas of my life because only then will I know true contentment and fulfillment. These are very attainable goals if we choose our focus wisely.