Monday, May 14, 2007

God Speaks in Sign Language

Did you know that God speaks in Sign Language?
There are times when we are faced with a decision that does not present itself with an obviously right choice, leaving us unsure as to which way God would have us go.
Down through the history of man God has in times like that clarified His directive by speaking in ‘sign language’.

It is often the clearest, most assuring, personal word we hear from Him, but I find that many people are afraid to trust ‘the language’ or its value in their relationship with God.
Oswald Chambers often referred to God as ‘the God of the haphazard’ (God of co-incidences).
If you want to hear God's ‘sign language’ you cannot believe in mere co-incidences.

We have so many instances in scripture where God spoke through ‘sign language’, and even encouraged His people to ask for it.
“The Lord spoke ….saying..’Ask a sign for yourself from the Lord your God, ask it either in the depth or in the height above.’ (Is. 7:11)

God is eager to confirm to us His word, to give us the confidence and assurance that YES we have heard His voice! No doubt! How easy it is to 'trust and obey' when you are sure God has spoken!

Gideon is the originator of our colloquial phrase “put out a fleece”. If he was going to accept the job offer he needed to be sure it was God offering it to him. He asked God for a ‘sign’, not once but twice and then when he was still unsure but too embarrassed to ask God a third time, God who knows the insecurities of our hearts, offered him a third sign - one so clear that it removed all doubt from Gideon’s mind. (Judges 6)

When Hezekiah begged God for his life and God said he would give him 15 more years, Hezekiah asked for a sign that God’s promise would come true. He requested that the sun go backward ten degrees. God gave him the sign. (II Kings 20:10,11)

While God is never impatient with men/women who desire a sign to be sure that it is God’s voice they have heard, He does become angry with those who desire a sign for the sake of the sign.
Jesus was very abrupt with the scribes and Pharisees who came to Him and said, “Teacher, we want a sign.” Jesus answered, “An evil and adulterous generation…shall be given no sign.” (Matt.12:39)

I recognize that our biblical fellow saints did not have the written word as we have it, and the only ways they had to confirm they were making a right decision was to seek the Lord’s word through a prophet or receive a sign from God.
Today, we cannot ask for a sign simply because we are too lazy to study what God has already clearly portrayed in His word. But when our desire is to choose the best.. to be obedient to what we believe God is saying to us, I believe that God delights in us asking for a sign.

I have asked so many times and God has always answered.

A couple of years ago when my husband began to be serious about selling our property my heart sank…it was the last thing I wanted to do. I did not believe I would ever be as happy anywhere else. So I began to pray and ask that God would give me a sign that He was directing our move. In fact I asked Him to spare me looking - that if He wanted us to move - it would just ‘fall into our lap’. And it did. He gave me not one sign but many! I felt like Gideon!
Maybe I will share that story in another post!

When I worked at Eatons, I had an hour for lunch, or an hour at supper time depending on my shift. I did not want to waste that hour just sitting in the staff room and do small talk. So I began to pray that God would send people my way to share the hour with, people that I could help or encourage or comfort or direct toward God. And they began to come. It was rare that I had a lunch hour alone, in fact, I sometimes had more than one person wanting to share my break.
The first time it happened I was in a quandary. I had made an appointment for lunch, but shortly before my break started, I received a tearful call from someone who needed a shoulder to cry on. Could I please meet them for lunch. I could not find it in my heart to say no, and even though I already had made a commitment to someone else I said yes.
Hanging up I thought, what have I done? I can’t be in two places at once! I did not know which one of my two appointments was the most important.
Immediately I prayed. “Lord, I have gotten myself in a mess… I don’t know which of the two people You want me to meet with. I ask you to work it out. Cause one of them to cancel so that I will be free to meet with the one You chose for today.”
I felt strangely at peace and waited. The phone rang… it was my original lunch partner calling to say that something unexpected had come up and she could not come after all… could she come tomorrow instead. I assured her that was fine with me, and brushed aside her apologies.
That happened several times, and while I was told by some people that I was behaving in rather an irresponsible way, I never felt that God minded. When I would look up and say, “Well, it happened again!” He would just smile down and work it out – every time!

I believe that God is eager to guide us and direct our paths in a way that we clearly understand. Do we not do the same for our children?

James 1:5 is still true today..”If any of you lack wisdom, let his ask of God, that giveth to all liberally and upbraideth not!!”
ASK ! and see if God will not confirm His personal word to you, so that you can walk in confident obedience!

1 comment:

Lovella said...

God cares so much about the details of our life.
Such a loving God to be so attentive. How precious that we can lean on him with the smallest of concerns.