I often quote one of my favorite scriptures, Jeremiah 29:11-13, to those who are going through difficult times in their lives and things look hopeless. I also quote it to new believers who will begin to learn the promises of God, and this is one of His best.
11 For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. 12 Then you will call on me and come and pray to me, and I will listen to you. 13 You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart.”
This morning I read in Luke 1:45: Blessed is she who has believed that the Lord would fulfill his promises to her!”
I have believed this promise since I learned it in 1995 and it has proven itself, or better, God has proven Himself, many times over in my life since.
I have found it pays great dividends to believe…especially in difficult times.
We don’t have to be in a church, mosque, synagogue, temple…whatever…to hear that still small voice. We just need to listen and be aware that God wants to communicate with us. Listen to this:
Call to me and I will answer you and tell you great and unsearchable things you do not know. Jeremiah 33:3 NIV
Whether you turn to the right or to the left, your ears will hear a voice behind you, saying, “This is the way;walk in it.” Isaiah 30:21 NIV
For God does speak—now one way, now another—though no one perceives it. Job 33:14 NIV
The Lord would speak to Moses face to face, as one speaks to a friend. Exodus 33:11 NIV
Whoever belongs to God hears what God says. The reason you do not hear is that you do not belong to God.” John 8:47 NIV
God’s Revelation to Elijah
11 Then He said, “Go out, and stand on the mountain before the Lord.” And behold, the Lord passed by, and a great and strong wind tore into the mountains and broke the rocks in pieces before the Lord, but theLord was not in the wind; and after the wind an earthquake, but theLord was not in the earthquake; 12 and after the earthquake a fire, but the Lord was not in the fire; and after the fire a still small voice.
Look at these two words and discover what they have in common…listen…silent. Happy Sunday.
In quietness and in confidence shall be your strength.
I like this photo by Anne Zwagers of a flock of sheep with a church in the background. It reminds me of John 10:27 My sheep listen to my voice; I know them, and they follow me. Looking forward to green pastures today. Happy Sunday.
Photo by Anne Zwagers on Unsplash
It came to my attention today that a Scarborough MP recently died of cancer. Arnold Chan was fifty years of age and a well respected and loved politician who was first and foremost a humanitarian who cared deeply for his constituents and fellow Members of Parliament. He was said to be positive, optimistic and full of energy.
After hearing a replay of one of his speeches, this particular sentence stood out for me…”That is the challenge that is going on around the world right now,” he said. “No one is listening. Everyone is just talking at once. We have to listen to each other.”
“We have to listen to each other.” How profound is that? And how timely? And how to the point…whether in politics, families, friendships, relationships, marriages…”We have to listen to each other.”
These words remind me of a line from the famous poem, “Desiderata”: And listen to others, even to the dull and the ignorant, for they too have their story.
Some people leave this world a better place by the things they have said and done. Arnold Chan was one of those people just by uttering that single sentence…”We have to listen to each other.”
I read Revelation 1:17 this morning and it reminded me of a dream I had in 1991. Here it is in an excerpt from my book, My Precious Life.
The next time God spoke to me in a dream was 1991. I dreamed my family was gathered in an old farm house which had seen better days. As we exited the house, the overhang of the verandah collapsed, knocking all of us to the floor. I stood up and watched as everyone got to their feet except my eldest daughter and youngest son. As I gazed down at them lying there, still as statues, the thought came to me: My first and my last…why my first and my last? Once again I woke up with a tingly feeling, with the words, first and last, repeating in my mind. I felt no fear or foreboding, but that dream stayed with me for weeks until I came across Revelation 1:17 where Jesus says, “Do not be afraid, I am the first and the last”, confirming that he is truly in my life, and is always by my side, waking or sleeping. To this day though, Debbie and Kelly, my eldest daughter and youngest son, refuse to be on any covered verandah together.
I might add here that in verse 19, Jesus goes on to say, “Write, therefore, what you have seen…” which was one of the scriptures that prompted me to write the book.
I’m not sure why Revelation 1:17 came to me this morning, but I always love to be reminded of the many ways God speaks to us if we only listen.