This question has haunted my faith walk for as long as I can remember. I grew up listening to people say they have conversations with God. It was normal. As a kid, I didn’t even question it. As an adult, I am still trying to figure it out.
One side of the conversation is clear – prayer. Of course, I can pray and talk to God. A day rarely goes by where I don’t talk to Him. It’s easy to talk. I talk to Him like he’s my best friend right there with me. Sometimes I do it out loud; other times there are people around and I don’t want anyone to think I’m insane so I pray silently. Sometimes I bow my head; sometimes I fold my hands; sometimes I close my eyes. Prayer is overcomplicated too often. It’s like there is a spiritual expectation around this holy act that intimidates people and discourages them from this rigid religion action.
Now, listening is a different story. After all, I can’t see him. He doesn’t text me. A voice doesn’t boom through the clouds at me. One day in church I heard a thought that changed my life. The speaker said: “God speaks to us through his word.” It was simple but life changing. Could God really communicate with me through the Bible? I don’t mean general statements of truth; I mean me, Molly. Could He know what I’m going through each day? Week? Month? Then respond to me, Molly, personally?
My senior year in college, I had found a great rhythm juggling my life at that time. I was student teaching, working part time jobs, and training for my future career as a professional athlete. I was up every morning early. I even had a routine of getting breakfast and packing a lunch. I would get a good hard lift in, get some touches on the volleyball and tuck in at a early hour – for a college kid.
I had gone through a major heart change in the last half of my college years and it had made my faith strong. The first and the last thing I did every day was get on my knees in prayer. I read the Bible daily – hungry for truth. I also had this devotional book called Jesus Calling. It’s a great little book that my husband and I still use often. The author uses scripture to construct a paragraph of encouragement. There are 365 of them; one for each day of the year. What make this particular book special is the words are written to the reader as if Jesus called you on the phone to tell you something. It’s great!
Anyways, one morning I will never forget. I woke up late and was in a rush to get to school on time. The easiest part of my morning routine to skip was devos. The guilt didn’t last long. It was either skip devos, not brush my teeth or be late. I figured God would understand; after all, I hadn’t missed a morning devo in months. I sprinted out the door and into the parking lot to discover it was freezing cold and my car was completely iced over – got to love Midwest America. I attempted to scrape my windshield but it was useless. There was nothing I could do except to blast the heater and wait. Annoyed, I realized I had a few minutes to spare – against my will – and could read my Jesus Calling for the day. I pulled it out of my backpack and opened it to the reading for the day. I read, “Make time for me today.” I didn’t know whether to cry or laugh. Overwhelmed with a sense of love from my father God. He knew me; little, stupid, always in a rush me!
If you are struggling with how to communicate with God. I encourage you! He’s listening. He cares. He desires a personal relationship with you. Don’t be intimidated by what others say or think. Speak to Him from your heart then open your heart and read from His word.