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Experiencing the voice of God sweeps us up in the grand narrative of Christian history. When God speaks, he forms and shapes the inner substance of our lives. Scripture and the historical writings of church history bear this out.
Theologians, mystical authors, devotional writers all share this common theme, when God speaks our inner reality is defined. Amma Sarah (4th century) called man, “a little world in himself,” and said that his inner life, “…contains all the elements which go to complete the universe.” If our inner life is a universe, then when God speaks the planets and stars take shape. His voice clarifies the rough edges of our interior.
The Lord was addressing deep insecurities in my life. Each morning His quiet whisper would assure my unsteady heart. As I read and studied scripture, I found myself identifying with the moments of deep insecurity those men and women experienced. The quiet whisper of God to Elijah became my new normal.
There was no earth-shattering revelation.
No incredible visitation.
No supernatural prophecies or visions.
It was just my heart resonating with the tenderness of His heart.
In scripture and throughout history, the voice of God has been written of as a distinctly powerful forming element shaping our humanity. From the underlying insecurity of Abraham to the illumination of the passionate pursuit of David, the voice of God has given resolution to the deep-seeded questions that plague mankind throughout history.
Throughout history God has moved upon mankind through the agency of visions, dreams, and strange events. Revelation, the in-breaking of something previously unknown, can become a common occurrence if we learn to pay attention.
As esoteric as the Desert Fathers and Mothers appear on the surface, I was fascinated by the true portrait of humanity that painted itself through their teachings. Even though they had gone to the extreme in their lifestyle, they never became un-relatable. The depth of teaching on the heart of man is deep, profound, and simple.
A little while back, as I was wrestling with what the Lord was calling us to do, He spoke this to me: “My expectation is that you would be you. I expect you to be the you I created you to be.”
God draws us into seasons where we struggle with our own hearts, in order to bring us from our own systems of comfort to finding comfort in Him. In doing this, he removes the “names of the Baals” and betroths us to Him. We begin to find deep communion and are deeply pierced by his tender compassion towards us.
We become what we worship. When we idolize something, we cannibalize that thing to grant us identity. The only thing we can then hear, see, feel, or touch is that thing. We become calloused to the things of God and sensitized to the influence of that thing.
On a recent trip I had been having a hard time connecting with the Lord. I felt overburdened and overtired. The schedule of the trip was strenuous and I had come into the trip already tired. As I sat down early one morning the Lord said to me, “Come to me and I will feed you.”
When God sets us apart for service He works within us a radical purity that refuses to compromise who He is and who we are. While hiddenness works to expose the issues of the heart that drive us, being set apart is simple. It is about purity within.