I Kings 19:11-15 ESV
Psalm 143:8 ESV
Psalm 46:10-11 ESV
I remember even when I was little (or littlier) watching my dad sit in his chair with his eyes closed. He would hold his old worn out Bible as he sat quietly.
I knew he was praying and listening for the still small voice of God.
In I Kings 19:11-15 we know of it from the Prophet Elijah, “And he said, “Go out and stand on the mount before the Lord.” And behold, the Lord passed by, and a great and strong wind tore the mountains and broke in pieces the rocks before the Lord, but the Lord was not in the wind. And after the wind an earthquake, but the Lord was not in the earthquake. And after the earthquake a fire, but the Lord was not in the fire. And after the fire the sound of a low whisper. And when Elijah heard it, he wrapped his face in his cloak and went out and stood at the entrance of the cave. And behold, there came a voice to him and said, “What are you doing here, Elijah?” He said, “I have been very jealous for the Lord, the God of hosts. For the people of Israel have forsaken your covenant, thrown down your altars, and killed your prophets with the sword, and I, even I only, am left, and they seek my life, to take it away.” And the Lord said to him, “Go, return on your way to the wilderness of Damascus. And when you arrive, you shall anoint Hazael to be king over Syria.”
Elijah heard the whisper of God.
My dad was waiting as he sat in his chair. He was waiting to hear the whisper of God.
Psalm 143:8 tells us that David knew of it because he wrote, “Let me hear in the morning of your steadfast love, for in you I trust. Make me know the way I should go, for to you I lift up my soul.”
I sat in the stillness earlier today listening.
I had a looming question I asked God to help me solve. As I sat in the stillness of the early morning hours, I waited.
I did get an answer but it wasn’t the answer I was hoping for. That’s often the case.
During dad’s final months he heard the whisper of God frequently. I didn’t want to admit it at the time because I wasn’t ready to let my dad go. I wanted more time with him. I was only 34 years old. I begged God to give me more time.
I wasn’t ready…I didn’t want to be ready.
My da was ready and he knew God was calling him home.
The night before he died I had a dream. At the time it was a little like a nightmare but in time I understood it.
In the dream I saw my dad walking with his head held high through a tunnel.
He was walking pretty fast, like he was excited to get to where he was going.
At the end of the tunnel there was a very bright light. It was the brightest light I’d ever seen.
I was on the outside of the tunnel scratching and clawing at the outside wall. I was screaming to my dad.
I was begging him not to go. It’s like I was screaming, “don’t go…don’t go…I need more time.”
He didn’t turn. He didn’t hear me. No matter how hard I screamed he didn’t look my way.
His eyes were firmly planted on the light ahead.
When I woke up I was in a cold sweat. I told myself it was just a dream.
That morning I received the phone call that he was gone. He was with Jesus.
I was numb. The next days and months were a blur. The line at the visitation went on and on. I appreciated their presence, but I was tired. I was so tired. My kids were real troopers the whole time. My youngest son was only four but he somehow understood that mommy was really sad.
After the funeral and mourning time with family I went back home. I lived five hours away but it seemed like the drive took forever. I cried the whole time.
Before my dad passed over he told me specific things I didn’t understand. I thought they were strange statements at the time.
Later, I knew what they meant.
It took a while but in time everything became clear.
Eventually I knew that God had whispered those things to my dad. They were my message.
I also believe my dad prayed especially for my kids. I see God at work in their lives even today. I see Gods at work in their kids. God is still answering my dad’s prayers today.
My dad passed over in 1987. I realized this year that I’ve now lived longer without my dad than I lived with him.
The good news…the really good news is that I did take time to practice listening for the whisper of God. Because I saw my dad listening, I still practice listening. The older I get, I do it more and more. I sit in silence and I wait.
Today, I was sitting in silence after I asked God to tell me or show me what to write about, and after a bit I knew God had something for us in Psalm 143:8.
The truth is, I spend a lot more time listening than writing. I think God does that because it’s really more about the relationship. The important part is sitting with God. The more I sit with God, the more I know God. The more I know God, the more I love God.
In addition to the listening I do tell God what’s in my heart, but I think He knows what’s in my heart even before I say it. He knows because He’s God.
Psalm 46:10-11 says, “Be still, and know that I am God. I will be exalted among the nations,I will be exalted in the earth!” The Lord of hosts is with us; the God of Jacob is our fortress. Selah”
Spiritual Practice: Be Still
Sit with God. Listen and know He is God.
In God, Deborah