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Purs g the Ab ng Life suing e bidin
Da avid Step ns phen
Hearing God G
Pursuing th Abiding Life he Copyright © 2010 by David Stephens All rights re eserved
This contra pes gh” g st arian teachin proclaims that ng s whatever you want you can have that prayer deposits int some sort of heavenly candy mac r y e. or disappoin But there’s an B nother side of the coin. it stand in direct o ds opposition to the “don’t g o get your hop up too hig teaching that we jus discussed. ld: *To pray but realize “no” is an answe (Don’t ex ” er. (Don’t expe to overco sin in yo life). spirit tual leftover In other w rs. or would you too agree that much of what we le s o u t f earn about th Christian l he life prepares us for disappointment? For exampl we are tol le. oy ate I could list others. words. r to t y chine which Go then cran to spit ou only the th od nks ut hings that tas sweet in life. that they’ve made living in h” e g ntment a bad of honor a way to magnify their perceived s dge r. ste 2|Page . In fact. we le earn early on not to get ou hopes up when it com to dealing with God. (Exp ect a dry and boring pra *Y You’re just a sinner save by grace.Hea aring God: Pursuing the A Abiding Life g e Is it just me. dest o d ayer time). m r sufferings fo the faith. *To pray hard when it’s hardest to pray. (Enjo second ra happiness). Interestingl some peo n ur w mes g ly. a second app o proach to the Christian li which ma e ife any follow th also leads to disappoi hat s intment. ople have become so accu ustomed to God “not com G ming through for them. but suc edicts low our expe ch wer ectations to a avoid the dis sappointmen that nt inevitably comes when God give us warmed y es d-over. xpect to ever hear “yes”) r ). ed ect ome our *Christians sh hould seek jo over happ oy piness.
or too much from God d s h doesn’t matte both end in disappoin er. while the oth asks that you expect everything. the sa s. you’ve probably cu your spirit teeth on one of the t W ut tual n two teachings mentioned above. Perhaps what you just rea ruffled a “theological” feather or two. on th c he t ne e sed he cheek. Whether you realize it or not.” 3|Page . r.Yet. sucking too long on such teachin leads to sp Y ng piritual tooth decay. e acred teachin we so ve ngs ehemently d defend usuall ly sound go when wr ood ritten down or shouted fr o rom the stage. and le scratching her spiritua head. disa t eft g al appointed that once aga God did not come th ain. the Christian lif no h fe longer po ossessing the bite it once had. an then proclaimed to all that the prize we were giving away Jesus had given to her I nd l y. is ” These two approaches to the Christian life require their follow to act v T n e wers very differen ntly. she didn’t win. One believes God doesn’t do. but never translate we into exper ell rience. the othe believes God doesn’t do enough. One appr roach asks th you expe nothing. If so. Indeed. Whether yo go into a sitt er G ou uation ex xpecting less from God. hrough on Hi “promise” to her. ntment. eithe the belief that tells you “not to exp too muc from God or s er u pect ch d. remembe wondering how this woman would square the possibility o not winnin after mak er g w d of ng king such a bo proclama old ation. I’ll ne e e ever forget th time early in my radi career whe a he y io en woman came up to th broadcast booth at on of our live events. Tina. To con ntinue carryi the baggage ing of outdat and ineff ted fectual teach hings on the new course y n you’re headi would on slow dow ing nly wn the journ ney. both approa aches profess a teaching that sets up their follow for disap wers ppointment. kiss my wife. Besides most of the time. Rehat ect w her t gardless. j rememb t ad “ ” just ber that to ul ltimately get more from your Christian life requi that you discard any current beli t y ires u y iefs or “doctr rinal” positio that have failed to ad ons e dvance your life.
I ga up the pu ave ursuit of beco oming the vi ine—the sou of my sp urce piritual life— —and settled on being a bra n anch. spirit fruit that for so long typified my life. hings simply take you in a y n circular path leading to nowhere. hing changed Including my ability t hear God. I’ never forg the day th I forever left behind all of these worn out tea ’ll get hat r achings and began trave eling on a dif fferent path altogether. I had n idea the im he d no mpact that C Christ’s life coursing through min would hav Everyth ne ve. ctory.” In both cas the teach hat ds ses. d. c yard home. To c clearly hear G speaking you must call the viney g. because if they did go s p . suddenly my Christia life picked up momen y an ntum. p ed o re plastic. t somewhere. the up-an nd-down Chr ristian life th brought me nothing b disappoi hat m but intment and an upset spir ritual stomach. I left the loud sweaty fac d. and ins tual t y stead headed for the quiet. Me s f n eaning. wo ould I pursue e.the one th “demand too much from God. I chose to fo n e he ath to ollow only th hose teachings which fell at the feet of Jesus and not man. where I had worke so hard to manufactur the fake. A path that t took my life deep into th Way calle e he ed Jesus. c In reality. that only a Chris stian teachin or ng creed cal lling for a gr reater revelat tion and reco ognition of J Jesus in the m moment. At th time I did this. Your view of life changes when you place Jesus i front of ev Y s p in verything yo see. I realized the folly of defending eit t d ther side of a argument when both sides lead to the an t o same disa appointing conclusion. the day I left th circular pa leading t nowhere. By tr ou rading in the old path fo the new on called the Way. to God Your Christia life canno live in both the factory and the vin Y an ot h y neyard. The momen you try to generate the work of Go nt e od— 4|Page . you would a already have are rived. I hopp off of th endless ro e or ne e ped he ollercoaster r ride. And whe I turned in my theolog in favor of a momenten n gy o -by-moment life exchan with Jesu t nge us. serine wo d orld of the vin neyard.
attemptin to generat His voice amid your own self-mad spiritual f ng te o de factory—ma competin any ng sounds sh up and vie for your attention. God is out there. our I’ come to realize that relationships hinge on co ’ve r s ommunicatio No com on. or don’t know what to list for. the noise ge so loud. e the ken f he single au uthority in yo life. Of cou urse. som wonderin if “anyone is out there ng e?” Well. 5|Page . elationship to occur requ o uires two-way communic y cation. the qu uietness whic surrounds the vineyar somehow shouts down all ch s rd n the comp peting voices leaving the lone voice you hear—t unmistak voice of God—as th s. Eventually. tho ough. no . Ir ronically. w B t n ns when the co ommunicatio on between you and God flows only one-way. unlived. relationsh hip. So. Me eaningful relationships do not allow for commun d nication to tr ravel in just o direction one n. an He contin W nd nues to speak You just n k. In fact. for any deep vibrant re p. as you read— a —leaving the factory beh e hind for the vineyard—p prepare to re emove yourself from the old. from you to H d y fr Him. need to know what to lis w sten for. y can’t hea how E ets you ar anything. circular path that le r eads to nowh in favor of beginnin a new jou here r ng urney along t the Way. God is always spea akw on’t r w ten metimes you f find yourself f ing. mmunication. But much of the Christian life remain on the table. but when you do listen.
but if cheesecake provides you ant o u with the only dessert option. These wan originate somewhere outside the c ng nts core of your inr ner being and this do g. T o fi That’s why a “want” nev rises very ver y high in im mportance. two rivers rage. The Voic of Desire ce nside of you. one flo r owing downs stream and o upstream each one p one m.Hearing God’s Voice V God can use anything.” then. in anyway. as nothing more than a “tak this one or that one” tr n e ke r reat. three area in which God speaks that I’ve cho as osen to high hlight by no m means const titute the onl ly way He communicates. some n ething we ca annot do to th One so lim he mitless. carries in it everythin to satisfy your wants. at any time to s G a a speak to you To limit H expressio u. at ple find too good to be tr g rue. You may wa a piece of chocolate cake. the river flowin downstre o T e ng eam. worn out. Obv viously. T ng Typi6|Page . they offer yo a chance to ou connect with God in ways beyon what you currently ex w nd xperience. then the n. But sinc you’ve never recogniz His voic in these ar c ce zed ce reas while tra aveling on th old. Thin of a “wan nk nt. His on would place limits on Him. ownstream river they flo in runs es r ow specially swift in those t times you fin nd yourself looking for something outward to fill you up. circular path leading to nowher I believe t he r re. The first. So let’s begin with the fir and most prevalent w He speak a way tha most peop n rst way ks. you gladly pic up the for and start e u’ll ck rk eating. Just ab bout anythin will do. pourIn ing a mea asure of satisfaction into your life.
G must wa the exact opposite. n. s h you your desires More than s? n likely you’ve conclud that He can’t (or wo ded on’t). Gue which on God speak through? ess ne ks Let’s go back to the original premise that most Ch L k hristian teac ching sets yo up for disa ou appointmen With this paradigm. ture befo arriving. A desire crav within an burns with an intensity that. For example: t F *Y desire to marry. to your life’ every crea and creva ’s ase asse. b but never ful subsides until satisfie Desires shift your lif out of neu lly u ed. side ach. r hrough your b body with a ravenous hu unger. which means that w whatever you really desi u ire n nd re s God ant for your life must be of your own doing. But the secon river. s fe utral and into drive. bu with bold d th ry ut desires—the e deep long ging to posse somethin that you currently go without. Wants and de W esires. while desires hang around and make t b t w d their presenc ce felt. then. the one that flow upstream originates from a sourc deep with B nd ws m. W ess ng c Whereas a wa sits as nothing ant more than a treat on a dessert pla a desire rampages th ate. An if the desir originates with you. It pours int his es p ng ng . To flow up . behaving as transients in your life.cally. ce hin you and then moves outward thro t ough your en ntire person. Wan quickly c nts come and go. pstream and defy the law of ws nature. so God must want you to r You t w remain single e. represent tw very differ r wo rent aspects of life. you wants fail to add any long-lasting benefit to y ur l g your well-bei and inste just cont ing ead tribute to an already over-sized life. 7|Page . th river rage with the power to brin long lastin meaning to your life. a longing for your destin Desires begin within ore ny. not wit momentar wants. aimin to o ng take you places you’v never bee Just outs your rea a desire allows you to see your fuve en. b ves nd h y mes. at tim may ebb and flow. how can God speak to y through y nt.
b G 8|Page . designed the frame (your unique situ d e uations and e experiences) and now to make it go just ). so Go must expe you to sta put in you current jo od ect ur ob. when we talk abou ut desires we mean thos cravings in your life that refuse to go away. Your desire then. but typic cally what y you desire co omes to you by way of God’s voice. God built the en T d ngine (the co ombination o your stren of ngths and we eaknesses). l on moves to oward. Bu now you l as a pers d’s ut live son—created in d His imag and redeem by Chri The fact that you ref ge med ist.” This will come as a su u “ ” c urprise to ma any.*Y desire to have child You t dren. Is God so pas s ssive as to le eave all the “desiring” up to you? Or is He so en “ p r ngaged with you that He te you whe He wants you to go via your desi ells ere s v ires? Remem mber. He planned out the perfect environmen and situati p t nt ions to guide you toward that e d purpose? ? If God would go to all tha trouble be f d at efore you we born. T w se i o They fall into the catego of ory what you long to do “right now.” mewhere in His thought of creating you. He ha a purpose in mind for you to fulfill? And alon ts g ad r ng with the purpose. fuel the directio your life g ur es. *Y desire to start a bus You t siness. t flect His natu and that He paid for your ure r sins gives God the rig to comm ght municate with you in wha h atever way H chooses. so God must want y to go wi d you ithout. o o needs to pour in the gasoline (you desires). He Think of it this way. you simply existed as a tho u ought in God mind. how much mor (for lack o a ere w re of better ter “engaged with you do you think He is now that you’re alive? Befo you were rm) d” k ore e born. ay But don’t you think that if God alread knew you before you became “yo that som B u i dy u u ou.
H w nd er ading toward. ber. or even wh we hear H say in o t w ar . Since your desires fall under “every s c te ything pos ssible. you begin to recognize God’s voice speaking to y in your desires.” creati the craving for the go re e ary o o ing ood “D” desir that He ha in store fo you? God doesn’t so much care a re as or d about how yo begin life or ou e what lette you currently stand on Rather. If y knew tha u’ll G s you you at everythin you desire (not want ng ed ted) in one form or fashi came to y as the v fo ion you voice of God d. ity unicate isn’t limited to what we can read.” ” But for you to desire “D” might overw B o ” whelm you w while you si on “A. S Sometimes “ “B” may even occupy a desire that looks and soun like som n d nds mething anti God.” don’t you think the time has come for yo to recogn His voic in giving t t ou nize ce them to you? When you lea the work of the facto and take up residency in the quie of the vine W ave k ory et eyard. e ny hip n th mmunication n. you may begin with a hot a heavy de ting it go once you ar o rrive at “D. God uses everything possible to communicat with you. how can w you possibly see “D” when “B” and “C” stan in your w ” a nd way? So God gets you of “A” and m d ff moving towar “D” by fir giving yo a desire for “B.” Meaning. God virtually consumes Himself with your desire Rememb His abili to commu G y H h es. But if God’s ultim f mate goal is to bring you to “D. hat Him our own head Since the depth of an relationsh hinges on the strengt of the com ds. or hea others say. 9|Page .” (and then eventu rd rst ou fo d ually “C”).” don’t you think He needs you to desire “ first? M o t H u “B” Maybe the bad d “B” desir will create the necessa hunger to travel onto “C.We never rea know wh letter of the alphabe our lives r on.” A it After all. At a one time we W ally hich f et rest any e might occupy the lett “B” without knowing that the lon term goal for the part ter g ng l ticular situati is ion u M u n and esire for “B” but end up let” to drive us to “D. He cares how you end an what lette you’re hea er n.
be hear ecause God’s s reasons for communi f icating do no hinge on how well you behave. —to te What we see in the tangib world. more than likely God is just moving you from one le e y u etter of the alp phabet to the next. nd ing would us a form of communicat se tion—the sp poken word— complet such a creative task. atoms an molecules owe their existence to God’s comm nd s. you u’ve just not known wha to listen fo Begin by listening fo His voice i your desir at or. an op ship with you required fr u rom Him a n never ending stream of c g comGod’s pla to develo a relations munication. f he amount of communic o cation flowin your way as does the one between you and G ng y n God. ce The Voic of Nature In all the way God could have create the univer He chos to speak it into existen n ys d ed rse. So do it! A if today’ uld y r” And ’s desire los a bit of it luster tom ses ts morrow.what wou you do? I imagine you’d “go for whatever you desire. So go with Him! e o Hearing God’ voice isn’t as difficult as some hav led you to believe. I would never presume to speak on God’s behalf. 10 | P a g e . y or in res. Q ot h u Quite frankly God speak to y. I believe that out of all th relationshi you carry on in a day not one of them has th he ips y y. Why? Why would He do this wh merely a “thought” f W H hen from Him co ould have do the job? Of one course. Up unti il now. e municated w word. as well as those unseen el W ble s lements in th intangible like he e. se t nce. Y don’t ha to H ’s t ve o You ave clean you urself up spiritually befo putting yourself in a p ore position to h Him. (please ta this in th spirit I me it) He ju can’t shut up! From t beginnin ake he ean ust t the ng. but I do fin it interesti that He o G f. ks us because. In fact you could say t.
Does u s God’s sp poken word ever lose its power? Me e eaning. na T ature. en’t wer Here’s the po H oint. n od esh of the ear the dust He used cam into exist rth. what does this mean? Let me ans s ? swer this que estion by first asking you one. he ord So. Thus. since the words G spoke at the beginni e God t ing of creatio have fulfi on illed their pu urpose. EVERYTH HING is held to ogether by th spoken wo of God. th the wor s w r hen. with power and revelati s half ion. The pow of God’s words rest in the fact that they co wer ts ontinue to speak long after the primary purpose fo speaking them has pas y or t ssed.that His very words hold together everything created. ould) with an emphatic “NO!” Then what about th words He spoke when creating so e w he n omething out of t nothing? You’ve proba Y ably never th hought about this. His words never lose their power. Why? Because regar rdless of who or what God’s words w origina intended for. Jesus t told Nicodem that to r mus receive eternal life a man must be born again. they infinite continue speaking w power. He never re m b epeated this c claim to a sin person. ely with Therefore. I ima he he ve p agine you wo ould answer. once H were ally d He communicates them. 11 | P a g e . by the very fact tha it came in existence through Go spoken at nto e od’s words. rds which Go spoke to create the un od niverse have lost any of their pow either. yet ngle . me tence throug what He s gh spoke. but it d t doesn’t take too much c e contemplatio to on arrive at the fact that when God speaks. co ontinues to speak on beh of God. So. But today. do th no longe r possess an power? If I asked you if hey ny f u any of th words in th bible hav lost their power. (as you sho . no one seems to listen to th words tha nature spe B o t he at eaks. millions of people ha come to Christ as a result of som ave r meone repeat ting this mes ssage to them m. tha His words act sort of l a “Divin v h g at s like ne Glue” tha keeps everything from flying apar And even though Go created fle from the dust at m rt.
In a court of la your wo of whether you’re in the court room or not. when Jesus said that mu uzzling the c crowd’s praise of Him w would induce the e rocks to cry out. Th I you r ome he lds G y is tters not. I’m not te n re eaching pant theism—that all is God— t —but I do ins that God is in all. they contin to tell the story of Jes with pow . even though God Himself do n d oesn’t reside in the stuff of creation. regard r dless communicate on you behalf. e But today. ts So then. eac ch same hol true for God. He is the source of all life. bec cause His wo hold ev ords verything tog gether. the gra of wheat— ain —still to this day—tells the story of Jesus’ death burial. essence. no one seems to listen to th words tha the grain o wheat spe B o t he at of eaks. In fact. Why? B Because all o God’s wor proclaim the of rds m message of Christ. nue e sus. wer and in tru uth. d resurrection. ev when some of those words hold together an aspect of creation. ven 12 | P a g e . sist In case you ar wondering. so as to provid fruit for ot e to nd de thers to enjo In oy. and f h. But today. Whether He arrives personally or sends Hi words mat represent the other. what mus this word want to say to you today Jesus exp st y? plained to H followers how. I believe He lite c erally meant it. or going int the soil an dying. then. His words m e f most certainly do.If all of creati came int existence and remains glued toget f ion to s ther by God’ spoken wo ’s ord. And wh herever His words exist. no one seems to listen to th words tha the vine sp B o t he at peaks. as the true His vine. ords make de eclaration for you. s ur aw. In essence. He revealed to those same followers that a grain o wheat mu choose be H t t of ust etween rema aining alone and living. y and your words beco one. Whe you speak your words en k.
ugh esn’t reside p physically in creation. cre eation itself screams at th top of its lungs the message of Jesus. s he But are you listening? B l Consumed wi the word of God. tells the st w e hich tory of Jesus s. Maybe somet M times you ne to take a break and s eed stop reading about God a go listen to and n His voice amidst natu e ure? Maybe God has so e omething spe ecific He wa creation to tell you o ants on His behalf? Maybe He wants to take the wor He spoke at the begi H rds e inning of tim and let yo me ou hear them for the firs time? m st Maybe. all we see. just maybe. To avoid gettin into a biblical b ew ng that’s a nice way of sayi “argumen I’m ask ing nt”) king that you momentaril set aside t u ly the debate. S even thou God doe e So. Every ything created by God co ontains wor which co rds ommunicate the message of Jesus. and even that wh we don’t. Yet. creation has mo to tell us than we cou ever hea C ith d ore s uld ar. But di you know that the wor spoken b id w rds by pain and suffering or riginate with God? h I realize that bringing up this subject steps on a fe toes. Y need on in You nly look to your personal experience for validat y l es tion. God wants to tak the relatio M m ke onship betwe you and Him to a pla it een ace has not yet gone.I want you to consider for a moment what this me r w eans. (t 13 | P a g e . y ce The Voic of Pain &Suffering You already know that pa and suffe Y k ain ering speak i voices all their own.
ower arrives in your life s e never ear or late. we’ll look at life is e—your life. tead allow your life and your experie ences to be t commen the ntators. and WHAM. misunderstan and take what I say to mean that we shouldn’ ask God to remove our agony. your big toe. y Can you reall say that yo C ly ou’ve lived absent of any pain and s a suffering? D you know Do w anyone who has skat by withou pain or su w ted ut uffering scarr rring their lif How ma prayer re fe? any equests do you share with others— others sh with yo o w —or hare ou—that orig ginate from s some sort of pain f or sufferi ing? I’m going to ventu to guess quite a few. We can e do this be ecause God never contra adicts Himse in what H says. and ho the manna ow 14 | P a g e . So don’t m a nd g. ain oment matter rs. Therefore.bible and what you know of it. God uses pain and sufferi as a way to bring you back to the moment. Since He chooses to e s use “life” as a form of communic ” o cation. I’m even go ure q oing to go ou on a limb and ut say that not one perso living tod has avoided pain and suffering. pain and suf n on day d ffering must serve some purpose oth than askin God to re her ng emove it. So. bu rather just in time. He should also commun gh a nicate elsew where. What might they say? Pain and suff fering have a way of mak king the curr rent moment all that mat t tters. Instead of go d k oing back-an nd-forth on w the bibl says regar what le rding this subje let’s inst ect. s or nds pain and suffering to communica on His be ate ehalf. Th nd w o w ’t o r he desire to remove pain from our li n ives is natura But let’s presume fo a moment that God sen al. that at the first sign of pain an suffering I go squeal ling to God. in thi case. we ca look to lif for the needed corroborating evid an fe dence. only the pa in the mo a . W G n ing y u e Why? Beca ause only in th moment can you expe he c erience the power of God God’s po p d. Re rly ut t emember the days of Mo e oses. I admit. Thi means that anything H elf He is t He communicates throug the bible. You can consume yourself wi regretting the past or worrying ab ith g bout the futu but drop an iron on y ure.
God sends e s ou l o ate pain and suffering. Each day. no amou righteous living abso fa unt s olves you fro having to listen to wh God has to om o hat say throu pain and suffering. People to zy e— Christian people—who arrive kic n cking and sc creaming at t wintertim of their li the me ives probably y still carry a lot of the world with them. moment. yo can travel lightly. they te to hang around and r o end a refuse to leav until you ave u’ve heard th hem out. not the year month. we or even day. so that e d to when the time comes to leave. God withholds some of His most inti G H imate and ch herished wor until we need rds 15 | P a g e . God never intend for this w y e ded world to bec come the last stop t on the jou urney. But God also speaks to pl B liable.arrived on the ground one-day-at o d t-a-time? To put an extr flake or tw in the pai today. How does Go communic to a con H od cate ntrolling pers son? Throug pain and suffering. out of a o ra wo il fear that God won’t come throug tomorrow. gh How does Go communic to rebel H od cate llious person Through pain and suf n? ffering. eek. How does Go communic to a stub H od cate bborn person Through pain and su n? h uffering. then. ugh d I imagine God sends these two to rem mind us not t get too coz with this life. In fact. When your life lags behin in the pas or fast forw W nd st wards to the future. you must rem h y move a little of the world from your life. God measures H power by the d His y r. to br ring you bac to ck the “right now”—the only chance you have to experience Christ’s lif flowing th e t e fe hrough you— — requires that pain and suffering begin commu t d b unicating. A though y may not like what pain And you t and suffe ering have to say. To communica this fact t us. hands s-off. obedie people th ent hrough pain a suffering and g too. spoils ever c gh rything.
But ou independe ed ur ence requires that s we carry everything upon our sho u oulders. I guess you might say tha pain and su m at uffering serv as God’s verbal lasso rounding us up ve o s e haps. Th nd t and hough their ti steps tow iny ward self-relia ance sometim fail to ev register in a day. wh in good tim squirm to get out of mom and d ho mes f dad’s laps. r ens Pain and suff fering tell us when it’s tim to sit on God’s lap. su uddenly wan to be cudd nt dled in them! It’s at these times that our relations e o ship with our boys deepe the most. a cut on a finger— e t —bring them running fo comfort! Two m or boys. some of the sweet discours we have w God com out of pain test se with mes and suffe ering. But isn’t the same thing true in regard to our child B s t d dren? My tw boys. we know which way the sc ultimately mes ven i h cale tips. In either case. they lose the nee for our she ed epherding un a tiny bit of ntil pain or su uffering—a bump on the head. Ironi ically. G still uses them to tie us n on’t God s when we stray. Litt tle-by little. one-day-at-a a-time. Perh up to insu we stick around. Tru wo uman and Ca alvin. Som metimes it ta akes pain an suffering t remind us that nd to s some thin just weig too heavy and were never meant for us to car ngs gh y n rry. even in those times when we do stray. ages six and four.them the most. We declare our indepen me ndence from God when we feel as if we’ve som m n i mehow earne it. What has He said to you? W ? 16 | P a g e . req a quire less an less from their mom a dad. God speaks to us throug our pain a suffering ure gh and g.
What you do or how you choose to a u’ll “ W o u access God’s ( alk. hem nd oving toward them. creation (taking a wa watching a television show. “Wow!”). I sa move tow ut aid ward them! You don’t n Y need to pray b because He’ already sp ’s poken to you th hrough your desires for th d hem. so if you move in a directi and com up against a closed do jiggle th handle an pound if you want. aski a questio whatever matters no 17 | P a g e . where sho ould you beg gin? First. and why the all ey magically appear afte the storm. inking: but w what if what I desire orig ginates from me and no God? Do let this th ot on’t hought stop you. Or ask where all the birds go w w e when it rains. Note that I didn’t say d e pray abou them. the strength of a relationship grows proportionat to the lev of comm o p tely vel munication.A Final Thought T When you rec W cognize how much God communica w ates—in the t three ways I’ve discusse ed plus man more—yo spiritual life will beg to dramat ny our gin tically accele erate. answer this q question. Him han nt m. you just go. and if He tells you what He told me. I know you’re thi w. h n show tha explains th human bo at he ody. he and closi doors. Reme ember. God a speaks th also hrough open ning ing o ion me t oor. What desires keep you aw W k wake at night Maybe yo could thin of these a t? ou nk as your hop and dream Write th down an begin mo pes ms. Deepen the communication and you’ll deepe the relatio y en onship. g n ing on. al rything around you le So. which means that hearing Go voice in eveh t od’s n a eads to a mo satisfying and reward ore g ding spiritua life. t Next. at God spea through your desires and wants you to find H more th you wan to find Him aks y s. just go look for another doo Trust tha nd y ut t or. r) ot. (I actually heard God a y er . bu if it fails to open. ta inventor of every d ake ry desire—spiri itual or not— —that burns wit thin you. He will take care of the rest. go for a walk and li N isten for God to speak th d hrough natur Or watch a television re.
inten n nding to take you further and e further in a relation nto nship with Him. you refu use to ask the em. remains the T t nto . in a variety of ways. ece It separates us from all the religions by highlightin the fact w s e y ng we follow a person—not a teaching— t —but also th the perso n we follow lives today and wants u hat w us living in Him! 18 | P a g e . Many of God’s mos treasured thoughts He speaks thro o st e ough pain an suffering. of cou urse. like the grape hangs on to a b a n t branch abidi in the vin What ro ing ne? ough edges hav pain and suffering kn ve nocked off yo life. to er ou you s gle hang on and abide in Jesus. er. Finally. re r w T egardless of the manner in which He e o w ays. In each of h itual life to make you thirst for Him even mo y w ooses to spea He has th same goa and objecti ak.Simply ask God to sp a peak to you through the things He ha already sp t as poken into ex xistence. t to I hope this discussion abo the differ ways Go speaks ad enough s to your s out rent od dds salt spiru H ore. He spe eaks very sp pecifically. But ther more yo should kn re’s ou now. As you tr ravel. on that leads you in the W ne Way. ation in som way teach me hes Jesus. and in the midst of the traum what hea our d t ma. e center pie of Christianity. he al ive—to brin ng the many different ways God cho you into an abiding relationship with Him. aling words ha they spok ave ken? Only you can answ these qu wer uestions—un nless. Therefore. nd Do you really want to go back to a sp D y piritual life th circles a path going n hat nowhere? In nstead. ns speaks. or even that which He sa His objective remain the same. the need for your life to be grafted in Christ’s. listen to the past or present voices of pain and sufferi n n ing. He sim H mply asks that you begin t listen. Go offers you another pat od u th—a path th goes som hat mewhere. and d then liste for the gre en eater revelati of Christ Remembe all of crea ion t. Do thei words reve ir eal the greate purposes for which yo live? Do they allow y to focus on this sing moment. The message of abiding.
Then. how to do it. wh don’t you take a mom to share the current state f n’t hy ment of your Christian life Writing it down and sharing your thoughts w others ca sometime be C e? t s r with an es therapeut especiall when you do so in a non-judgmen environm tic. deo her he he ife. So. On the origina page wher you opene up this do n al re ed ocuFinally. I’m going to as you to do me a favor. make sure you look for an email in three days that r n well as all your hopes and aspirat t m plan on sharin somethin very perso ng ng onal contains a link you can click on to receive my video. You sh hould see it three days fr from the time you received e the link to this ebook I hope you anticipate where the st t k.To begin liste T ening for Go voice in everything b od’s brings you i into an aware eness of you ur need to abide in Jesu But this idea of abiding—what it means. o ory wn. through your life as well. the is a place for you to leave your co any conc cerns. an why you s a us. tions. Your journey towards living the abidi life is ju getting sta Y y ing ust arted. But if you wouldn mind. and . u tory is about to take you t u! 19 | P a g e . ly u n ntal ment. Watch your email box h for the lin to my for nk rthcoming vi ideo. I’d like to hear fr ere e l omments. out u hat s fe. if you w m sk wouldn’t mind. When yo finish wat ou tching it. that will better explai the messa of abidin rom you. y w In three days. I plan to send you a vid that furth makes th case for th abiding li n . or voi ice ment. F free to a any ques Feel ask stions. gh other’s lives. i t w nd seldom hear it discussed r d—tells a sto all its ow It tells a story throug my life. between now and the think abo what you fear and wh frustrates you in the Christian lif as en. I p in age ng.
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