“We are here and we are joined together not as the community of those who know, but of those who all look for the word of their Lord." ~No Rusty Swords Dietrich Bonhoeffer
Then, as I reflected on the letter, I began to doubt myself, wondering if this family member wasn’t correct in his assessment.
As I contemplated the letter, a thought occurred to me that I’d not put together before. I realized that this letter was not directed by the Holy Spirit because I did not respond to it as I normally would respond to the Lord’s voice.
I have heard the voice of the Lord at different times in my life, sometimes to encourage me and sometimes in discipline. In each instance my response is to either hang my head and say, “Yes, Lord you are right,” or joy, depending on the circumstance.
In the Cost of Discipleship, Bonhoeffer writes, “To know Christ means to know him by his word as the Lord and Savior of my life. But that knowledge includes a recognition of his plain word directed to me.”
Sometimes we might wonder how we know it is the Lord speaking. The disciples knew because he was in front of them speaking.
But really it’s not different for us as it was for them. What they saw was a man walking with them. It could have been a lunatic they were following. Like those people who followed Jim Jones. But with Jesus it was what he said that caused the disciples to realize he was the Messiah. For us, we hear the stories or read the word and those of us who respond to his call, know its Jesus speaking to us because we have the Holy Spirit.
Isaiah 30:21 is a great promise in God’s word and having the Holy Spirit with us is a fulfillment of this promise.
Your own ears will hear him, right behind you a voice will say, this is the way you should go, whether to the right or to the left.
In our lives, we know of people who have been saved from an early death.
There is a song by Casting Crowns that helps me every time I hear voices that make me angry, or are accusatory, or try to make me doubt myself. It’s called, “The Voice of Truth” and it helps us remember that listening to God’s voice is the best thing we can do; especially in those times when we want to ask Him “why?” It’s okay to ask God why terrible things, like the tornados in Texas and Oklahoma had to happen. It’s ask why children have to die. We have to remember that when we are in the deepest anguish and ask the why questions, he won’t always give us an answer. What he does say is, “I love you and I’m with you.”