When I was a young Christian, I had a friend who seemed to have a vibrant, exciting relationship with God that was far beyond my own experience. When she talked about God it was as if He actually sat down beside her in her living room every morning and had a chat with her. Whenever she needed something, it seemed that God always provided it and more.
My friend even had a special prayer language that she could use to speak only to God.
The idea of a prayer language put me off a little, but I really did want God to speak to me as he spoke to my friend – like two friends out for coffee on a Saturday morning. Surely my friend had gone spiritually deeper than I ever had. And surely that meant that I was missing something in my spiritual walk.
It wasn’t until my friend had led me a good ways down the path of the prosperity gospel that I began to see that maybe my impressions of my friend’s spirituality were not based in fact.
Many years later, after I had grown much more in Christ, I was in a group when the question came up – “Does God speak to you?”
I was amazed to hear Christian people saying that God did not speak to them very much or at all. After a little more conversation, I realized that many of the people in the group were wanting to hear from God in the same way that my friend had claimed to hear from God. They wanted to hear His voice…to hear His specific words for their specific situations…to hear words straight from His mouth and straight to their ears, words that no one else heard.
Unfortunately, I was in introvert mode and so said nothing. To be honest, I was even wondering if something was wrong with me and my relationship with God. I was not expecting to hear a special word from God. I was not expecting Him to speak a specific message for me into my ears.
Instead, I was thinking, “What about His Word – His written Word to us?”
I didn’t say it then. I let myself be intimidated by those who did speak. I hid behind my introvert identity. But now I am saying it.
God has given us His Word with purpose and intent. Every word in the Bible is God speaking to you and to me. It is the written revelation of God Himself. We don’t need anything else.
We don’t need other people to tell us what God has supposedly spoken directly to them. We don’t need someone to imagine for us what heaven is like. We don’t need God portrayed as our best buddy who sits and has coffee with us.
Instead we need to be content with God’s chosen methods of communication with us – His creation that makes His eternal power and divine nature clear and His Word which was written that we might believe that Jesus is the Christ, and that believing we might have life in His name.
Yes, I want to hear from God, and I do hear from God every morning when I open up His Word with a heart and mind that are ready to listen and obey. Yes, I do read books that people have written about God and about His Word, but I read through the lens of the Scripture that I have been eating and digesting for the past thirty-seven years.
The Word, though old in years, is never old. It is always new. God never fails to speak through His Word to His people.
When you need God to speak to you, go to His Word for you.
Simplistic? Not really. Simple? Yes, so…what’s stopping you?
Open it up every day and listen to Him speak to you.