Tag Archives: listening to God

When God Questions Us

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I admit it. I’m a bad blogger. Mea culpa and all that.  However, I have been writing like crazy to finish a portion of a book that has been in the works for way too long. My last post was a glimpse into the first chapter. For the month of June, an amazing group of women will read a few chapters and discuss them. I’m using this blog as a place to interact with them in the coming weeks, and I’m inviting everyone to come along for the ride.

pensive womanThe book is called When God Questions Us.  Together with a group of about 50 women, we’ll explore just four chapters in June. The lessons and related posts are available here.  You are free to participate online or in person. (See below for location/time info.) You can add comments here on this blog, or you can also visit the Facebook page of Covenant Life, the church hosting the study. I will post at least once weekly both here and on Covenant Life’s Women’s Ministry Facebook page, so feel free to participate either way.

The title of the book suggests its content. We all fantasize at some point or another about the list of questions we plan to hand to God one day. And, boy oh boy, he better have some good answers, right?  Is it possible, though, that God has a few questions of his own? Truthfully, God does have questions, and he has been asking them for centuries.  I invite you to join us as we dig into the questions God poses to man throughout the Bible.  I welcome you to chime in as you read and as you think of “God questions” that challenge, inspire, or bring you insight.  Maybe together, we can learn to be quicker to listen to the things God is asking of us rather than the things we are asking of God.

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Filled with Your Fancies

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© Simone Van Den Berg | Dreamstime.com

Ran across this Proverb the other day while working on the book I’m writing. This quote is the voice of “Lady Wisdom” lamenting the decided lack of interest in her offer to help us poor humans learn to live well.

Proverbs 1:29: “They would have none of my counsel and despised my every rebuke. Therefore, they shall eat the fruit of their own way, and be filled to the full with their fancies.”

Ooo…I don’t know about you, but the idea of being “filled to the full with my fancies”  sounds a little scary. Wisdom teaches us, doesn’t it, that we are sometimes the absolute worst at knowing what we really want or need. I don’t know about you, but I’m okay with depending on God to keep me on the right path. When you look back, don’t you see those times when God gave you exactly what you wanted, and you lived to regret it?  I can just imagine God shaking his head sometimes and saying, “Ok…if that’s what you want…but don’t say I didn’t warn you.” I’ve learned to listen a little closer, test the waters a little more carefully, trust my latest passion a little less, and move forward with a heart open to allowing God to make route corrections along the way.

Underappreciated? Think How God Must Feel!

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Yesterday, I was in full-on whining mode with Barry about how nobody listens to me at work. I’ve been smarting from a dismal workplace reality: You may have (or think you have) knowledge, insight, wisdom, experience, and talents that could solve real workplace problems. But the sad truth sometimes is this—nobody cares! Because I’m in a creative job, people often look at what I do as “fun” and—worse—they figure they can do it better. (How hard can it be if it’s so fun, right?) So you get to listen to people hurl insults at your best efforts and proceed to take over your fun job, because it can’t be that difficult. Ouch. (I need some serious chocolate. You may want some too. I warned you this was some serious whining.)

Then I read my little email devotional for today.* It focuses on some remarkably specific instructions that God gave to David as he approached a battle. (2 Samuel 5:23, NLT) The writer of this devotional notes how David had learned from a lifetime of experience to seek God’s advice and, more important, to act on it. Though David was a proven and remarkably capable leader, he recognized God as the ultimate source of wisdom. Logically speaking, David had excellent reasons to rely on himself. He had a stellar track record! But he didn’t rely on his accomplishments or his own strengths. Instead, he doggedly pursued God’s council, and then he humbly obeyed it.

How gratifying that must be for God! I wonder how often God looks at us and shakes his head, thinking, “I coulda told you!  But nooo–did you even ask? Don’t ask me!  I’m only the ruler of the Universe!” How delighted God must be when we actually seek out and listen to his advice. Parents, how nice would it be if your kids actually sought your wisdom and experience once in a while?

So, while I may be left feeling that my “brilliant” insights and skills are not always valued, I have gained the tiniest glimmer of insight into how God must feel when I go about the daily business of life without ever consulting Him for input. And when I do, I often ignore the nudge that tells me to “turn here,” or “wait,” or “better not do that,” or “go now!”  What makes me think I can ignore the Architect of the Universe? I usually wave him off, saying “I’ve got this, God! You just go back to your world-ruling thing.” The truth is–I’m not God, and maybe my ideas and input really do stink sometimes, but His is priceless and deserves my best “sit up and pay attention” attitude.

* Encouraging Words, http://www.christianitytoday.com/tcw/, Look under “free newsletters.”