November 28, 2017

Philippians 4:7 (NLT) — 7 Then you will experience God’s peace, which exceeds anything we can understand. His peace will guard your hearts and minds as you live in Christ Jesus.

When I was a 5th grader I used to have these nightmares of being squished by this big thumb pressing down on me and squeezing the life out of me. I would be crying and screaming so loud that it would wake up my dad and he would come running into my room pick me up and hold me and tell me that everything was going to be okay because he was here and he wasn’t going to let anything bad happen to me. The sound of my dad’s voice was always enough to calm me down and help me to go back to sleep.

Yesterday we found out the when we pray and give thanks to God for all he has done for us then we would experience God’s peace. So how does that work? Well I believe pray is more than just us talking to God. I believe that prayer is also listening for God’s voice. When we immerse ourselves in God’s word we are in a sense saturating ourselves with his voice. So when we pray and then stop to listen God will a lot of times just repeat to us what we have heard as we fed ourselves on his word. His voice isn’t any different than his word.

So we might hear, “I will always take care of you. I will never let you down. Trust me. Wait, etc” God probably at first speaks to us from his word so that we will get used to his voice. In fact Jesus said that:

John 10:1–5 (NLT) — 1 “I tell you the truth, anyone who sneaks over the wall of a sheepfold, rather than going through the gate, must surely be a thief and a robber! 2 But the one who enters through the gate is the shepherd of the sheep. 3 The gatekeeper opens the gate for him, and the sheep recognize his voice and come to him. He calls his own sheep by name and leads them out. 4 After he has gathered his own flock, he walks ahead of them, and they follow him because they know his voice. 5 They won’t follow a stranger; they will run from him because they don’t know his voice.”

Jesus is the shepherd and we are his sheep and he says that we will follow him because we will have learned to know his voice because we have heard him speak in the scriptures.

I remember on morning a few years ago I was in prayer and I specifically heard God say to me, “I will always show you which way to go. I will give you a full life in the emptiest of places, firm muscles and strong bones. You will be a well-watered garden, a gurgling spring that never runs dry.” It turns out that this is Isaiah 58:11 in the Message Translation. This verse has given me God’s peace 24/7.

I knew my dad’s voice and that’s the reason he was able to reassure me that even though I had a nightmare he would see to it that I would be alright. In this same way I know my heavenly Father’s voice and I am assured that everything will be alright.

Be Inspired Hilltop!