Saturday, November 16, 2013

Communication with God is a Two-way Street

Healthy relationships require communication.  Prayer is an essential part of your communication with your heavenly father.  Communication is a two-way street.  Let's first look at the talking part of it.  Just like a relationship with a friend or loved one, we must talk to the Lord.  That is commonly called prayer.  We talk with our friends or loved ones to get our point across, to explain things, to make our wishes known, to share information.  Now, if we have a friendship with someone and we never talk with that someone, how are we supposed to know things about them?  How do we deepen the friendship?  We talk.  How do you know what their favorite color is unless you have had that conversation?  How do you know that they are sick? Or maybe that they have just gotten their dream job?  We talk; by phone, via text or face-to-face. 

The other part of this essential element called communication is listening.  It is much more simple to speak, but it takes practice to listen.  Effectively listen.  Listening ensures the other party that you are sincerely engaged and invested in the conversation.  Listening takes practice!  I know that for myself, I am easily distracted by thinking about what to say next or by what I have to do when I get home, etc.  Notice how much of the distraction is because of ME!  I have to purpose to listen, to put aside MYSELF for a few minutes to invest in a relationship. The same thing goes for when you are communicating with our Lord.  Not only can we freely talk to Him about our struggles or the needs of others, but He speaks to us.  A still, small voice.  We must LISTEN!  The closer your relationship with the Lord, the easier it is to recognize His voice, His prompting. 

God is so good!  He will never leave or forsake us. He listens and He speaks.  How often do you talk to the Lord?  Do you listen for His voice?

Saturday, November 2, 2013

Are you willing to let go of your Isaac?

The sacrifice of Isaac put Abraham to his most agonizing test, a trial which he passed completely because of his total faith in God.  I dare to even imagine God asking me to slay my daughter!  The faith of Abraham is incredible.  It is easy for anyone to say what they would or wouldn't do until they are in the heat of the moment and must make the decision.  I would love to think that I am willing to do whatever it is that God asks of me, when he asks.  I know for myself that I can say that is not the case. 

Are you willing to let go of your Isaac?  Self-examination-time... what IS your Isaac?  What are the things that you adore the most?  What if God asked you to let go of it/them?  Is He asking you to give up something that you refuse to give up?  That is a lot to think about. 
Abraham walked in faith and obedience to God.  Obedience.  I can't help but wonder what must have gone through Abraham's mind as he drew closer and closer to the location he was directed to in order to make the ultimate sacrifice.

Wait a minute.  The ultimate sacrifice?  This is a picture of what God did for us!  He DID give the ultimate sacrifice! God sent his one and only be sacrificed for the atonement of our sins.  God asked nothing more of Abraham than what He eventually did for us. 
So, setting self there anything that God could ask of you that costs you too much?  Are you willing to let go of your Isaac?

Listen to the podcast on this topic: