Your Very Own Personal Message
While talking to one of our young men at Renewal Ranch today, he mentioned (again) the book Jesus Calling by Sarah Young.
This is to take nothing away from the book or from Young but I really tried to hammer home the point to him that God wants to give each of us our own personal message each day.
And I am a big believer in journaling what He says.
Numerous times in the Bible we are told to write God's laws on the tablets of our hearts.
It helps me to do that if I also write it out on paper.
I appreciate Young sharing with the world her insights and God's messages to her but those are messages to her, for her at a specific moment in time.
Yes, we can benefit greatly from them, but how much more will we be touched by God's Word if we seek out His personal, individualized message to us each day.
It is my thought that for most of us it is just easier to read a devotional written by someone else.
Getting down to the nitty-gritty, searching for our own message from God is a true spiritual discipline.
And I am not saying that I have a franchise on this.
As I wrote in a post recently, I struggle from time to time with my devotional life, with my seeking, with my journaling.
But I do believe with all my heart that God has a personal message for me and you each day if we truly take the time and discipline to seek it out.
You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart. Jeremiah 29:13
This seeking might look different for different people but for me it includes Bible study, concentrated prayer, meditation on God and His Word and a constant clearing of my mind of my own thoughts until I am positive that the thoughts I am hearing are from God.
One way we can be sure of this is if the thoughts that come to us are scripture.
My sheep hear My voice, and I know them, and they follow Me. John 10:27
God says that His sheep hear His voice so we know this is a biblical practice. He wants to commune with us.
This is a very good reason for memorizing scripture or at least reading it repeatedly over the years so that we can paraphrase it accurately.
To those of you who would like to start this or try this if you never have, I am including an excerpt just to give you an idea of how God speaks to me.
A Word from God to me from my 1998 journal--
"Will you be blown to and fro or will you stand tall like a mighty lighthouse that sits among very troubled waters?
Only a small light is required but this small light can be seen from great distances on the troubled sea of your life.
Do you feel that your light has gone almost completely out? Have you, in your own eyes, failed Me so completely that you think your light can never shine brightly again?
Today, give that light a little oxygen, a small breath of air. Fan that small flame with even one scripture from My Word. Remember, My Word will NOT return to Me void.
I will come and rescue you, my child. Is my arm too short that I cannot reach to save you?
Is my ear deaf so that I cannot hear your cry?
Seek My face, turn to Me in your time of trouble.
In the midst of confusion, I am near.
In the midst of troubled waters, I am a calming sea.
In the midst of the fire, I am the balm of Gilead.
Come unto Me, lean on Me, rejoice with Me, be happy with Me, cast all your cares on me.
Can't you see how much I love and care for you?
I made you. I love you, Dianne, yes, even you, Dianne.
You are beautiful to me.
Because of Jesus, you are beautiful to Me."
Wow! My own personal message from the Lord--what could be better than that?
I bolded the third sentence from the bottom because there is something really sweet and personal in there.
One morning (before the above was given and journaled) as I was beseeching God to "teach me" something and feeling like "I knew everything there was to know and how in the world could He possibly teach me anything else"--I'm sorry but sometimes I fight those kind of "proud, sinful" moments--right after I prayed that, I opened the Bible to this scripture--
So that your trust may be in the Lord,
I teach you today, even you. Proverbs 22:19
I was astounded that morning when He answered me like that. He really got me back for my prideful arrogant attitude but He did it in such a loving, tongue in cheek way.
He knows just how to teach me--just what to do and say so I will "really learn" and not forget. That has been many years ago and I have never forgotten where that is found in the Bible.
So when He spoke to me in the passage above at a later date and said to me "I love you, Dianne, yes, even you, Dianne," I knew He was playing with me--sincere but just kinda kidding with me and reminding me how clever He is. Oh my goodness, my God is so smart. His genius blows me away.
And He has a very special message for you too today.
Praying that you hear His voice and feel His great love.
And your own personalized message might be from Jesus Calling today or Oswald Chambers, or Charles Spurgeon, Dietrich Bonhoeffer or She Reads Truth or from a myriad of others--I read all of these from time to time, many times every day, but I still want to give God the opportunity to speak His very own individualized, personalized, "just for me" Word today.
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