Being & Building Followers & Friends of Jesus
But just as it is written, "Things that no eye has seen,
or ear heard, or mind imagined, are the things
God has prepared for those who love him."
God has revealed these to us by the Spirit. For the Spirit
searches all things, even the deep things of God.
1 Cor 2:9, 10
In many Christian circles, when a person starts sharing about GOD talking to him, oftentimes questions arise in the minds of fellow believers. Is this really true? Does GOD really talk to people today just like He talked to Moses or Abraham? Some believers are even indignant for not having the same experience. They begin to wonder if GOD has chosen to leave them out of the conversation.
Well, let me ask you? Does GOD talk to you? Do you have on-going conversation with GOD during the day? Or is your prayer life a one-way street? If GOD is not talking to you, then you don't have a living relationship with Him! It is not my intention to make you feel condemned but only to point out what you may be missing – a thriving, growing relationship with your heavenly Father. I, very seldom, hear a message on how to hear from GOD and so I have decided to share with you my own personal experience. Since every individual was created unique, I don't expect you to have exactly the same experience as I but we would certainly have a common ground.
King David once said, "The nearness of GOD is my good"(Ps 73:28). King David cleaved to YHWH and made Adonai Elohim his refuge. He prayed to YHWH at least seven times a day! Even at the night watch, he wakes up to be with YHWH. YHWH said, "David is a man after my own heart." David was so close to YHWH that he came to know His very heart and will. Saul offered sacrifices to YHWH and was condemned but David wore the priestly ephod and burned sacrifices before YHWH and he was accepted. Wow! What was the difference? Though Shaul was anointed king, he never bothered to get close to YHWH but David poured out his soul daily to YHWH. David appreciated how significant YHWH has been to his daily walk. In fact, David refreshed himself daily in the presence of YHWH.
So how does YHWH speak to His children? There are several examples from the Scriptures but you can meditate on that by yourself. At the outset, I would like to submit that my example is very subjective but I would like to share my own experience to make it more relevant. Early in my christian life, I used to wonder what my mentors meant when they said, "God told me..." To them, God was very personal and He dealt with them as sons. But I didn't hear from God like any of them; so I felt like a second-class citizen. One Saturday morning, as I was meditating on Isaiah chapter 6, when YHWH appeared to Isaiah in a vision, I suddenly stopped and blurted out my frustration, "LORD, I am your son just as all your other children and I don't believe that a father ignores his son. I won't utter a word and will be quiet until I hear you speak to me." At that moment, YHWH recognized my longing and I heard Him speak to me, "Fred, who will represent Us? Whom shall We send?" To say that I was astounded is an understatement. I was totally awed, and knelt down and worshipped, saying, "Here I am FATHER, send me!" That day He anointed me as a teacher to make known His wonders. That was the first of only two times that I heard YHWH speak to me audibly.
Oftentimes, YHWH would speak to me as a word that enters my consciousness. He is not formal at all. Most of the time, He speaks to me as a Father would to His son. He instructs and directs me. He counsels and comforts me. He rebukes and corrects me. He is the gentlest Person I know and His 'ever-presence' soothes my spirit. There were certain times when the word of YHWH would come and command me to deliver a message or send me to pray for a sick person. In any of these, YHWH was always very specific.
When I meditate on a passage of Scripture, the HOLY SPIRIT instructs me not only at that moment of reading the Word but throughout the day and even at night as I sleep. I think I am especially susceptable to instruction when asleep because my flesh and carnal mind could not interrupt, so the HOLY SPIRIT uses my imagination to instruct me through dreams. There have been several instances when I needed a new idea and as I asked the FATHER before I slept, He did enlighten me through a dream. I have also experienced seeing a vision as the LORD YESHUA spoke to me in the midst of prayer. The LORD has given me so much encouragement at these times and strengthened my faith.
If you notice, I address GOD by the Name that He said He should be known from generation to generation – YHWH. Some say that His name is too holy to utter so they have substituted God instead of the Name. Even in the English Bible translations, the translators also substituted LORD to the proper name of YHWH. The enemy has really succeeded in this endeavor because the adversary knows that there is power in the Name and the character and nature of YHWH is in the Name. In strict grammar rule in linguistics, proper nouns are not translated but may be transliterated; for example, YESHUA (Hebrew) to JESUS (English). Personally, I address YHWH as He wants to be named. All the pagan gods are named by men and are otherwise known by them as God; but I don't want to call on my GOD in the same name as the pagans do. YHWH invites us to call Him by His Name and as FATHER. I raised this matter up because calling the person you love by his name is an essential part of an intimate relationship. Communion with YHWH is based on an intimate knowledge of the holy.
You cannot expect an intimate relationship to develop without spending time with the person you love. With the greatest Person in the universe, it means giving Him priority over every other activity and over every other person. It means whatever He says, you believe and trust that whatever He promised, He will fulfill. It means, not just reading the Scriptures but really bothering to know what He meant and invoking it over the circumstances of your life as a habit. It means wanting more of Him everyday. It means desiring His presence every moment of your life.
In a dream, YHWH described time to me as a cycle of lessons in dependence. The past is before me because it is already known, while the present is what I observe happening as I walk; but the future is at my back because it is unknown. In order to walk in safety as I walk backward into the future, I must hold on to His steady hand that upholds me, trusting that He knows the way because He owns eternity. The journey is long and I must walk in union with YESHUA because He is the Way. I must abide by His Truth and only the sum of His word is Truth. I must continually fill up with His life so I can also impart life. The walk of a follower requires a constant connection to the throne of Grace so I cannot help but ensure that a vibrant link is maintained. I must not only upload my thoughts but also download YHWH's thoughts so that I am thoroughly guided whether in simple circumstances or in difficult challenges. As Shaul said, "Do all to the glory of YHWH."
In the spirit realm, the language of thought prevails. What prevails within your thoughts? YHWH said through the prophet Jeremiah, "I will put My Torah within them and write it on their hearts..." (Jer 31:33) What language do you speak?
YESHUA said, "My sheep listen to My voice, I recognize them, and they follow Me..."(Jn 10:27a)