Some of my favorite moments have been when I’ve heard God speak to me directly, in my mind, as if someone were speaking to me face-to-face. This happens less often than the others I’ve already mentioned, but when it does it is much more powerful, impactful. Typically it’s just a sentence or two, maybe only a few words, but they strike to the heart more than a thousand words spoken by anyone else. Sometimes with the previously mentioned “feeling” or mental imagery I could doubt whether it was really Him, especially after some time had passed, but when I hear Him speak in this way, there is no room for doubt.
A few years ago, I drank caffeinated drinks regularly. Daily. Multiple times a day, sometimes. It got to the point where if I didn’t have a Coke with lunch, I’d have a headache in the afternoon, consistently. My energy level would fluctuate throughout the day, dependent on that surge of caffeine, and I didn’t think much of it.
One day I had just picked up lunch at Chick-fil-A. I ordered my meal with a Coke, and they told me something was wrong with the fountain machines and they couldn’t serve Coke at that point. I asked for Sprite instead (a non-caffeinated drink), a bit disappointed and already thinking about the Advil I’d have to take later for the headache that would surely follow. I took my lunch and headed out to my car to leave. As I opened the door and slipped inside, I distinctly heard: “No caffeine,” and nothing more. The voice was stern, but not angry. A command, but gentle. A bit of instruction from a loving Father. Along with the statement came a form of understanding that this meant I was to abstain from all caffeinated drinks, which were essentially my only source of caffeine intake.
I do not understand the reason for this command. I enjoy the lack of frequent headaches and having more energy each day without being dependent on a beverage to give it to me. Perhaps there was some other reason, health or otherwise, that it came. But to this day no caffeine has touched my lips, and it’s been two and a half years as of this writing. I’m content without it, and do not know whether I will ever have any again. I await His voice, His command.
I’ll give one more example.
One autumn day during my college years, I was walking back from my last class of the day to my dorm, feeling a little depressed. I had just gotten back a test and was a bit disappointed with myself because I knew I could have done better. Also, financial stuff was kinda tight right then (though that holds true for most college students) and none of the jobs I had applied to at the time had worked out. Well, these things and several others were fresh on my mind and just weighing on me.
I was walking along a path, looking down at the sidewalk in front of me. I briefly raised my head and at that very moment a long, thin leaf fell right in front of my face, not a foot away. Just as the leaf crossed my vision I could hear the distinct voice of God speaking to me:
“See that leaf, Josh?”
Another single leaf of the same kind fell, close enough to snatch from the air.
“And that one?” He whispered.
A third leaf, same as the first two, fell just within arm’s reach.
“And that one, too? Do you see them, Josh?”
I nodded my head and the voice continued:
“Josh, I know exactly when those leaves fall and right where they land. Do you not think that I love you so much more?”
I lifted my face to the sky, laughing as a huge grin split across my face. I felt extremely encouraged.
Ever since then when I see leaves fall it reminds me of God’s endless love for me. When the wind blows hard and a million countless leaves dance all around, I can’t help but laugh from the joy of it. It’s as if for every single one of those leaves, the Father is saying it again and again: “I love you . . . I love you . . . I love you . . .”
Check out the rest of this series:
How God Speaks (To Me) – The Prophetic Word
Photo by Melanie Holtsman. Used under Creative Commons License.