Tag Archives: God speaks

I Don’t Know ‘Bout That

Faith is the bird that feels the light when the dawn is still dark. ~Rabindranath Tagore

Excited fear.

I feel it in the pit of my stomach when I hope something is true, but maybe, just maybe, I got it all wrong.

You get a call from another company about a job, but it’s above your level of expertise. Was it an elbow nudge from God saying Go for it?

You’ve made it through the second month of pregnancy, longer than ever before. You don’t tell anyone the news, but your whole body glows with anticipation. Is this finally the blessing?

The visa you’ve been applying for makes it to the last hurdle. Will you leap over this final obstacle and be a missionary? Is God really going to send you?

The shepherds were out in the field. It was late. It was dark. It was surreal.

An angel appeared and the night was lit bright as day with the glory of the Lord. The angel’s message? “The Messiah has been born.” (Luke 2:9 ff)

The legend. The myth. The anticipation. The excited fear.

The shepherds have just been told that what they have waited for all their lives has just come true.

But can they really trust the messenger? Did they really hear what they thought they heard? They head to Bethlehem to see if these are angels of God or messengers of lies. Were they having hallucinations or were the Heavenly Hallelujahs real?

They don’t say anything until they see for themselves that the baby is in the manger just as they were told. Then their fears are transformed into faith that they just have to share.

“When they had seen him, they spread the word. . .” (Luke 2:17)

Listen to God. Then go check it out. See if what you think he has said is truly for you. And after you kneel at the manger, let your excited fear turn into ecstatic faith.

And without faith it is impossible to please God, because anyone who comes to him must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who earnestly seek him. Hebrews 11:6 NIV

Do I Have to Yell?

I remind myself every morning: Nothing I say this day will teach me anything. So if I’m going to learn, I must do it by listening. ~Larry King

When my father first met my sister-in-law, he spoke very loudly. She isn’t hard of hearing . . . just foreign.

We’ve all done it. Someone doesn’t understand something you say, so you say it louder. They heard you. They just didn’t get it. No need to yell.

This morning I told my husband I wanted him to think on something before answering me. “Don’t just jump the gun and say ‘No.'”

Should I pick up some extra hours – read that as pay – by working evenings this month. The kids are out of school and can take classes during the day hours. FYI, I work on Beijing Time.

Matt left for work and I continued my quiet time. The daily devotional book I read was about slowing down, the book I picked up this weekend at the library sale was about finding your focus and sticking to it, and then, out of nowhere, a friend texted me a devotional about rest.

Evidently God needed to yell for me to get it.

Do you hear God yelling?

Are you praying for a friend’s failing marriage while you feel guilty that you haven’t spoken to your own husband for a week?

Did you get an email about a retreat the same day your best friend suggested you get away for a while?

Did the four-year-old most precious thing in the world wrap her arms around your neck while they announced at church that they need teacher’s in Bible class?

God knows how to speak your language. Are you listening?

“Why do you call me ‘Lord, Lord,’ and not do what I tell you? Luke 6:47 ESV

When the Word Is Quiet

The measure of a conversation is how much mutual recognition there is in it; how much shared there is in it. If you’re talking about what’s in your own head, or without thought to what people looking and listening will feel, you might as well be in a room talking to yourself. ~Dylan Moran

“Go on in the living room.” Katherine’s voice echoed down the hallway.

An old woman sat in the hard, wooden chair. White hair framed a glaring face.

“Go here. Go there. I just want to know why.” Mary struggled to speak, her voice barely a whisper. But her body was yelling loud enough.

I walked over to see what was going on.

A stroke took away most of Mary’s voice, and age has taken away her strength. Mary whispers everything she says. Katherine is hearing impaired and couldn’t understand Mary’s angry outburst.

I squatted next to Mary and asked what was wrong.

“No one ever tells me what’s going on. ‘Go here. Go there. Take a bath.’ But they never tell me why. I just want to know why.”

“Well, Miss Mary, I’m Traci. I come to read every week.” I placed my hand on her knee, and she looked in my eyes. “You always come in the living room and listen to me read. Would you like to come in today and listen?”

She covered my hand with her own. “Yes, I would.” She grasped the chair arm and began the painful process of standing. Katherine tried to help. “You go away.” Mary whisper-yelled at Katherine.

She grabbed her walker and followed me to the living room.

“I just want to know why.” I lift my eyes to heaven, but the answer is incomprehensible. “Why do I have to do this? Why do I have to go there?” Nothing. The answer is inaudible, and I am hard of hearing.

Mary didn’t follow me because she was desperate to hear my story that day. She followed me because I am familiar. She found me to be gentle and reassuring.

Sometimes I need a gentle, reassuring mediator, too. I cry out to God, but his voice is too quiet, my ears too deaf. I don’t know what to do, so I sit stubbornly in my chair glaring at the world in confusion.

Then the Spirit whispers words I mostly don’t understand, but they are gentle and familiar. I take Jesus’s hand and follow him to the Father’s throne room where I am a part of the story.

And so are you.

Every house has a builder, but the Builder behind them all is God. Moses did a good job in God’s house, but it was all servant work, getting things ready for what was to come. Christ as Son is in charge of the house. Now, if we can only keep a firm grip on this bold confidence, we’re the house! That’s why the Holy Spirit says, Today, please listen; don’t turn a deaf ear as in “the bitter uprising,” that time of wilderness testing! Hebrews 3:5-7 MSG

Coincidence or Conversation?

“So how do you tell if something is a coincidence or is God telling you something?” I confronted Matt this morning as I worked through my daily devotions.

“Why?” he laughed.

And so I told him the story. . .

Tuesday I received an email from my publisher informing me how my book has done on the market so far. It was less than satisfactory, in fact it was embarrassing. I sold 52 copies through the commercial markets making about $28. Just so you know, $28 won’t pay even one day of my mortgage.

I worked through all of it as faithfully as I could. I am not in this to make lots of money, but not even one DAY of my mortgage? My story is to tell people that God wants a relationship with them. Yeah, well not many people are finding that out. It is up to God to bless this ministry. What ministry is that, exactly?!

No matter what I told myself, a little voice on my should whispered disparaging remarks. I began to fall into a cavernous crevasse of doubt and despair.

Then, yesterday afternoon, I received an email from the OVU Lectureship Chairman asking if I would be willing to have a book signing in April. Of course I would, thank you. Then in the evening, I received another message on Facebook from an unknown source that they want me to join in a local authors’ book signing in October. Hmm, I began to regain my balance on the edge of that cliff.

Finally, this morning my devotional was. . . “Who wants to write a bestseller? Everybody, if today’s popular writers’ conferences are evidence. . . .Everybody, it seems, longs to be the next literary star. .  .But what if we created for God? With God? Just to worship God? But on his terms? Chew hard with me on these questions today. As a published author, I confess to writing many things I hoped would sell- and never anything I hoped wouldn’t sell. All artists hope for acceptance. Don’t we? But the Word of God teaches us such surprising truths about this God-given impulse to cocreate with God.” God’s Great Blessings

The author goes on to describe the response God had to building the ark, the tabernacle, and the temple. He says he gave the ability, the gift, to create the wonders these people were creating. How many times I have sat down to write on my current project, and I have no idea where the words, the plots, the events come from. They obviously come from a deeper source, from the Spirit.

“Three things seems like more than a coincidence,” Matt said.

I have to agree. I am not paying the mortgage, or even buying dinner tonight, but I am writing for God. What are you doing for God? Are you being faithful to his call, even when it seems “obvious” that you should be doing something else? Stay faithful. He will bless.


“I have given special skill to all the gifted craftsmen so they can make all the things I have commanded.” Exodus 31:6