One of the joys of moving to our new neighborhood is getting to know all the folks who live around us! Yesterday, we met a neighbor in a special way.
We are blessed this week to be hosting a Vacation Bible Club at our home. The children are meeting in our garage and playing their games in the front yard. As I was standing nearby, I noticed a vehicle slowly drive by. I thought they were going to stop but moved on. Shortly thereafter, I noticed them coming back this way, so I walked out toward our road. The truck stopped and a well-dressed gentlemen got out and asked about the kids meeting at our home. I explained what was happening, and he said, “Well, I have a gift for each of them.” With that, he reached in the back seat of his truck and counted out insulated lunch bags for the kids. Then he carried a box of insulated cups to the garage for every child. The kids, of course, were so excited to receive this man’s generosity!
I followed my neighbor back to his truck and he said, “I have wanted to stop here several times and have always made an excuse. Today, I said, I am going to do what I believe the Lord is prompting me to do, and I’m glad I did!”
To hear God’s voice we must belong to God. Jesus said, “My sheep listen to my voice; I know them, and they follow me” (John 10:27). Those who hear God’s voice are those who belong to Him—those who have been saved by His grace through faith in the Lord Jesus. These are the sheep who hear and recognize His voice, because they know Him as their Shepherd. If we are to recognize God’s voice, we must belong to Him.
We hear His voice when we spend time in Bible study and quiet contemplation of His Word. The more time we spend intimately with God and His Word, the easier it is to recognize His voice and His leading in our lives. Employees at a bank are trained to recognize counterfeits by studying genuine money so closely that it is easy to spot a fake. We should be so familiar with God’s Word that when someone speaks error to us, it is clear that it is not of God.
While God could speak audibly to people today, He speaks primarily through His written Word. Sometimes God’s leading can come through the Holy Spirit, through our consciences, through circumstances, and through the exhortations of other people. By comparing what we hear to the truth of Scripture, we can learn to recognize God’s voice. (gotquestions.org)
How often have you been prompted by the Holy Spirit to do something, and you have turned away with an excuse which left you knowing you were disobedient and lacked faith in God? How often have you been prompted by the Holy Spirit and you responded in obedience and your heart was refreshed, renewed, and blessed? I saw the latter today.
Just a simple encouragement for all of us today. When the Spirit of God speaks to us through His Word or that still small voice that matches up with God’s Word, obey. You will then say just like my neighbor, “I’m glad I did!”