I like talking to God. I like hearing Him and knowing He hears me.
I like hearing a word from Him and seeing it come to pass. I like asking Him for my heart’s desire and watching Him bring it to fruition.
But I don’t like when I’m certain I’ve heard Him, or even 90% sure I’ve heard Him, and it doesn’t happen. Or I’ve shared my heart’s desire with Him and it never comes to pass. It never materializes.
Not only do I not like it, but it causes me to stumble.
God’s supposed to answer prayer, right? And He speaks to us, right? And He’s God so He can do anything and make sure we’re hearing clearly. He can step in and correct us when we’ve misunderstood. He spoke to His disciples and revealed hidden meanings to parables. He corrected their faulty understandings plenty of times.
So there’s my first stumble. Does God really speak the way I think He does? Or are my expectations faulty?
My second stumble is where I really fall. It’s when I begin to question if I hear God at all. I wonder if I missed it this time, then how many times have I missed it in the past? How many times have I done something or gone in a particular direction because I thought I heard God? But what if I was wrong then too?
At least I can plead that I did it by faith and I know He honors that and works all things for the good of those who love Him, but still. I want to get it right the first time. And I want to hear my Lord clearly and correctly.
So I stumble and wonder if I have ears to hear at all. Because I thought I was hearing Him, but I clearly wasn’t.
Now here’s something interesting that He’s revealing to me. It’s this: if I hear something I want or like and it happens, I rejoice. If I hear something I don’t want or like and it doesn’t happen, I say praise the Lord. I’m not all that concerned that I didn’t hear Him correctly.
But, if I hear something I want or like and it doesn’t happen, then that’s when I wonder. That’s when I doubt. That’s when I think I must not hear God and I’ve deceived myself.
And that’s very revealing. That’s quite an answer. An a-ha moment. God speaks, and I want what I want.
The bottom line is that God speaks. I hear. Sometimes I misinterpret, sometimes I hear muffled through the filters of this world, sometimes I hear wishful thinking. I’m human. I hear like a human whether I’m listening to God or my husband or my child.
It’s just the way things are. Praise His Name that He is faithful, that He works all things for my good. Praise His Name that He speaks at all. Praise His Name that He’s not bound by how or what I hear. And Praise His Name that He has purpose in all things, whether He speaks them to me or not, whether I hear right or not. And He loves me and keeps fellowshipping with me. God is good.