Yeah, I see the way you are looking at me right now. I’ve done the same thing when I hear someone say that. It’s almost certainly an eye roll and a sigh.
“Okay, let’s hear it. What did “the Lord” tell you?”
Hey, I have fallen for this too. There was a time I would be in awe of someone who would say that. I have met people who have called themselves prophets, prophetesses and those who claimed to have a “word of knowledge” from the Lord. I used to wait anxiously to hear what these people would say or hoping they would give me a “word”. I have even tried it myself. Yeah I know. Creepy right?
It is very wise to be wary of people who say they have a word from the Lord. Too many people have abused this claim and instead of something divine, it becomes a game of Simons says.
“The Lord says touch your nose.”
“The Lord says laugh.”
“The Lord says bark.” (Oh believe me, this has happened.)
All this stuff really gives God a bad reputation that He didn’t ask for and it’s really not fair. You don’t need these super spiritual people to hear from God. You can hear from Him yourself. You don’t need a spiritual circus sideshow to do it.
The problem is that people are lazy. They want the easy answer without having to find it themselves. You don’t need a spiritual psychic to find out what God wants you to do. You just need to spend the time to do it yourself.
Like I said, I have fallen for this stuff too. I have been in awe of these people when I should have been in awe of God and seek Him for myself. No, it isn’t always the easy way. Seeking God for yourself can be hard.
If any of these people say they have a word from the Lord and it is in contradiction to the Bible they are a false prophet so you’d better beware of these folks. Don’t let yourself be manipulated by their guilt trips or warnings that you could blaspheme the Holy Ghost. They love to use those tactics to play upon your fear.
Listen to me. God will speak to you. I can’t say that it will be in an audible voice, a burning bush or an angelic visitation. God does it in many ways and methods. I have learned that you just can’t assume how God will speak. Sure, sometimes He absolutely does use other people and when He does, it is awesome.
I have learned that many times God will speak through circumstances in your life. I know that’s not a super spiritual answer but you just have let God do what He wants to do. If He wants you to know something bad enough He will find a way to get through to you. Sometimes we get anxious and impatient but I’m pretty sure that God isn’t worried.
I have always wanted to hear the audible voice of God. I went through a period in my life that I pleaded and begged God to speak to me so I could hear Him with my ears but He never did. You know what? God isn’t going to be manipulated into doing anything. We aren’t going to command Him like a genie in a bottle. We aren’t His master.
The truth is that God loves us and He wants to have a relationship with us. I know that some of those TV preachers and extreme religious people have tainted who God really is but God is interested in us and in every aspect of our lives. He wants to be included. Hey, I am not smart enough to explain this to you or to try to convince you of it. I just know He’s a God that isn’t looking to strike you with a lightning bolt and send fire down from heaven.
I love the quote from the movie “Facing the Giants” when Coach Grant Taylor says “God can do whatever He wants to do, however He wants to do it. And He chooses to work in our lives because He loves us, because He’s good.”
If you ask me in what ways God has spoken to me, I would say mostly through circumstances in my life but He has also used other people with a timely word that I needed. Not one of those “the Lord said” but something I needed to hear in the right place at the right time. Many times I have found direction when reading the Bible and applying it to my situation. Sometimes by just sitting quietly – which is a lot harder than you think it is. There have been times He has given me a sign like the time I needed to know if He wanted us to move to Nashville. I was in a store looking through T-shirts in Tampa, Florida and the moment I got that prayer out of my mouth I pulled out a shirt that had Nashville, Tennessee on it. Yeah, you can think what you want but that was a God moment. You don’t have to believe it but when it happens to you it is pretty amazing.
As far as these people who have had a “word from the Lord” for me, it never turned out to be accurate or even helpful to me. I got burned by them and I learned from it. I’m not super spiritual or a perfect little praying hands Christian but God does speak to me. I just have to listen. That’s the hardest part.