Thursday, October 22, 2009

God's Gentle Whisper

1 Kings 19

The LORD said, "Go out and stand on the mountain in the presence of the LORD, for the LORD is about to pass by."
Then a great and powerful wind tore the mountains apart and shattered the rocks before the LORD, but the LORD was not in the wind. After the wind there was an earthquake, but the LORD was not in the earthquake. 12 After the earthquake came a fire, but the LORD was not in the fire. And after the fire came a gentle whisper. 13 When Elijah heard it, he pulled his cloak over his face and went out and stood at the mouth of the cave.

For the past year, I have been reading through Karen Kingsbury's books. As I finished one the other night, she referenced this passage. I've read and reread it many times over the past week.

How many times in our lives, do we expect to see God's answer as a huge event such as wind...or earthquake...or fire? After all, he is GOD...he can do those things if he wanted to. But here Elijah received his answer from God not in the fire, not in the wind, and not in the earthquake...but in a gentle whisper.

Do I listen closely enough to God to hear his gentle whisper? Do I stop talking long enough to hear him? I wonder if he sent the fire, earthquake, and wind first to get Elijah's attention? How many times does he put things in our lives to catch our we will hear his gentle, loving voice?

Praying today that we will be still and hear his gentle whisper in each of our lives.

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

God's Blessings

Give, and you will receive. Your gift will return to you in full—pressed down, shaken together to make room for more, running over, and poured into your lap. The amount you give will determine the amount you get back.

Luke 6:38 NLT

The picture running through my mind reading this was me in the kitchen last night, trying to fit a five pound bag of flour into my canister. Its just one of those things for me...I can't stand having an open bag of flour in my cupboard. So I shake and pour, shake and pour, trying to get as much in as I can. Often it pours out on the counter and all over the place!

What a great verse! The New Living Translation amplifies the quantity with which God blesses our lives...pressed down, shaken together to make room for more...running over, and poured out...We are full to overflowing (kind of like the closets in my house, and my garage)!

But read it again in a different version

Luke 6:38 (New International Version)

Give, and it will be given to you. A good measure, pressed down, shaken together and running over, will be poured into your lap. For with the measure you use, it will be measured to you."

During our Wednesday night class, we have worked through a couple of Angela Thomas' studies. Notes I took one particular night are still tucked inside my Bible, because something she said really made an impact. She says her worst fear is getting to heaven, looking in God's eyes, and him saying, "Oh daughter, I had such plans for you." God has an amazing set of plans, and blessings, just waiting for us if we will USE them!

Using God's plans for our lives is not always easy. We've also been studying Esther recently. Esther was called by God to do something extremely difficult and dangerous. But out of her obedience came great blessings. Sometimes our greatest "blessing" is having Him walking us through what he has called us to do!

My prayer for you and for me today is that we recognize opportunities in our lives to give and receive God's blessings. Let's not miss out on all he has planned for us!