First, listen…

I thought I was a good listener... I suck at it. 08/07/22

Dear Cheryl,

The Lord has been on a roll in my life.

Something wonderful happened to me yesterday. In yesterday’s entry, I told you how the Holy Spirit called my attention to the work of the larger body of Christ and my role in it. It was something I had never noticed before and when He opened my eyes to it, I began to understand more the synergy within the body.

But that wasn’t all.

Yesterday, I was led by the Holy Spirit into a worship session that was unlike anything I had ever experienced. For the first time, I started to sing in tongues and along the line, the Holy Spirit directed me to record as I worshipped.

Usually, I do most of the talking when I pray – like most of us actually do – but today, He taught me to listen. As I prayed fervently, I noticed at regular intervals my prayers would become a murmur, almost a whisper, and in that time I would hear God in my spirit, speaking to me. Goosebumps washed over my skin and I could not control the tears that started to come.

As I prayed this morning, habit almost forced me to resume my regular talking routine but He stopped me right in my tracks and I just listened. I believe Abba is teaching me to listen more to Him than I speak. I believe He is finetuning my sensitivity to Him, helping me to not be so strict with Him but be more open to His leading and voice every single time I worship – not just sometimes. He is bringing me closer like friends, to have more conversations where He will speak to me. He let me know that to steward the people He has put in my hands, I need to always be open to His voice so that they can experience Him for it is this kind of worship that provokes Him.

With my walls down and my heart wide open, I began to tell God about how overwhelmed I was from helping people. For some reason, I did not know how to have someone in need and not help even when it would take a toll on me. I would give my time, my money and my resources even when I did not have them; sometimes, I would make promises before I thought about them then go away feeling like I would not be able to fulfill them then wonder why I even made the offer in the first place. I told Him how I was not scared of this, just scared that there were just so many people in need and that I could not help them as much as I wanted to; that a day would come when all I have may be words and I felt it would not be enough.

He reminded me that He was the Messiah, not me. That was funny and it made me laugh.
He reminded me that He has also strengthened me and given me all that I need.
He reminded me that if He says I am helped of Him, then I am.

For some reason, the Holy Spirit brought to my remembrance one of His promises to me during my waiting period before my birthday. I realize that He had already began to work on my checklist! This filled me with courage and I began to declare strength to myself even as I asked God to send more men to me, ‘I am available.’

You know, when God said to me to Look to the body of Christ yesterday, reminding me that whoever was not against me was for me (Luke 9:49 – 50), I did not know He was prepping me for an open heart surgery to take out something sinister – pride. It’s a long story but the shorter version is this – becoming a believer did not shed me of an old habit which was the proclivity to do things alone. I mean, I started to call myself a wolf because it was an animal that represented that part of me. I hated group work or anything that required team work. As a Christian now, it translated to me ignoring the work of the larger body of Christ – I mean, Amanda always complains that if she does not tell me, I do not know half of what goes on in CCI. What would I do without Amanda, really?

This pride, masqueraded as my desire to be apart from the body of Christ and just do my own thing, has caused my jealously of my siblings to subtly despising the work of other harvesters in the Lord’s field, especially those I do not know personally. When I talked to Amanda about this, she said something very profound: ‘I think if we accept that that some people are higher spiritually, it’s easy for us to honor them. Honor is for everyone, but sometimes because we feel we’ve been able to ascertain a certain level with God ba, we tend to disregard people unknowingly.’
Sigh. There is no place for my pride here, my Lover won’t allow it. It’s us against the kingdom of darkness, not us against each other.

‘ Why do I feel so bare and open?’ This thought occurs to me as I conclude my morning devotion. A verse is stuck in my mind, ‘For by that one offering, He made perfect those who are being made holy.’

You know, it’s how we think we’re okay and the Holy Spirit just gets His surgical tools and starts to fix wounds that don’t even hurt us yet. We are being made holy even as we have already attained perfection. Whew. God is so beautiful.

This evening, I am having my bath when a question pops up in my head and I shrug it aside, mentally adding it to the list of things I’ll ask God the next time I pray. But I feel a nudge in my spirit from the Spirit, He’s saying He’s right here with me, why wait?

So I ask, I ask Him how it is that it was possible for Him to love everyone equally? It felt very robotic and I gave Him an example of the movies I had watched where there’s a group of people in a place and they had an idea of the Guy up there who cares about them only to later find out that it is automated.

He laughs and says to me, ‘Your capacity is not My capacity. You’re seeing Me through the lenses of what you think is possible but I don’t operate within your boundaries.’ I am swept off my feet. As we continue to talk, He directs me to post the recording I made on my Instagram and reminds me to be open to hearing from Him not just from my friends or close siblings but even those in the larger body of Christ. We are all connected through Him.

It’s been one heck of a day.

Written by
Maranatha
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