God Is Speaking – Are You Listening?

I have always been a big fan of radio – especially AM radio.  I remember in my younger days enjoying running the dial late at night to see all the far away stations I could pick up.  Depending on the weather conditions, the dial would be filled with “in and out” “staticky” stations from all over the country and even one from south of the border.  I admit it didn’t take much to amuse me as a child and this activity would do it every time.

Radio waves are very interesting to me.  Just think – right now, bouncing off the walls of the room where you are reading this, are radio waves from all over the place.  You don’t hear them because you don’t have a receiver.  If you will get a good receiver and tune it to the proper frequency, you’ll be amazed at what you will hear.  The sounds are present, but an activated receiver tuned to the right frequency is required to hear them.

There is some definite spiritual truth in the aforementioned example.  I have no doubt God is speaking to His Church today.  The question is – are we in a position to hear Him?  He is speaking – He has been speaking for a long time – but unless we are a tuned in receiver, we will not hear Him.

I must admit there are times I am not tuned in.  It is sometimes a challenge to move past the many distractions of our day to listen intently to the Holy Spirit.  We want to hear Him – we know we need to hear Him – but so many things are vying for our attention.  Speaking for myself, an intentional decision must be made to get in the closet (whatever this is for you) and get down to business with the Lord.  He is never far away.  I just need to focus…and listen.

I had one of those times earlier this week.  I knew perfunctory prayer and devotions would not be enough.  I needed a Word from God and nothing else was going to satisfy.  I did what I have done many times throughout the years – I took my Bible and notepad to my quiet place and prepared for an encounter with the Lord.  After a little while, it happened.  The Holy Spirit began to speak, and I heard.
 
Among several things I believe the Lord spoke to me on this particular day were the following instructions to the church as it relates to positioning ourselves for what He wants to do among us in these important times.

There is no doubt in my mind God is moving across the world, today, with a fresh wind of His Spirit.  This is not an isolated move of God; this is a global move of God.  His promise to pour out of His Spirit on all flesh is truly being fulfilled and will only become more prevalent in the coming days.  These are exciting times, indeed, to be part of His Church!

But the sad reality is – many will miss what God is doing.  Because of a myriad of reasons – religious spirits; tradition; lack of vision; secret sin; unbelief to name a few – some will watch as the revival touches and transforms others but they, themselves, will not be affected.  What a tragedy this is!

This does not have to be your story!  You – your church – your ministry – can move from the bleachers onto the playing field.  You can be right in the middle of all God is doing.  You do not have to be a spectator; you can be actively involved and here is how:

WAKE UP!  The day of the sleepy passive Christian is over.  While we were sleeping, the enemy crept in and took our nation, many families and, sadly, many churches.  We slept and he stole.  We were very comfortable while we slept – we even enjoyed beautiful dreams.  But while we were sleeping and dreaming, destruction was occurring all around us.  It is time to wake up!

A big part of being awake is being aware.  So many have adopted the philosophy of ignorance is bliss.  As long as we do not know about it, we are not responsible.  This attitude is an affront to everything the Body of Christ stands for.  We are not a people who runs and hides from the crisis; we are the ones who have been called to storm the gates of hell and demand the enemy to let go!  We pray for the Holy Spirit to sharpen our vision to see the needs around us and we boldly go where He leads us.  We are awake and vigilant!

The cry of the Lord through the prophet Joel is a call to the church today, “Proclaim this among the nations: Prepare for war!  Wake up the mighty men, Let all the men of war draw near, Let them come up.”  (Joel 3:9 NKJV)

This is the time for all hands-on deck.  Sound the alarm!  Wake up!

MAKE UP!  It pains me to say this, but some will miss what God is doing because of division, hard feelings and verbal assassinations within the church family.  Jealousy of other ministries and personal/political agendas that hurt people have become far too common within the Body.  It seems an end-time strategy of the devil is to divide and cause us to turn on each other.  In too many places he is having overwhelming success.

One of my favorite verses in the Bible is Psalm 133:1 – “Behold how good and how pleasant it is for brethren to dwell together in unity!”  This unity does not mean sameness or conformity.  It means we are all in the same boat together, rowing in the same direction and working for the same cause.  We are together even though we are not all alike.  We can celebrate each other and recognize each member has an important place and responsibility in the Kingdom.  We are not threatened by each other; we support each other and welcome to the table every brother and sister in the Lord.

This unity must become a treasured and protected element in our church.  Infighting and distrust will cripple us.  Someone must be big enough to say, “I am sorry.”  Someone must be strong enough to say, “I do not want to hear it.”  Someone must be spiritual enough to say, “I forgive you.”  It is only when we are willing to come together in a genuine spirit of unity that we will see God’s best manifested among us.

Now here is a word to the wise – in the real-world offenses will arise.  You are going to get hurt at some point – it will happen.  These are times not to sow disparaging seed but to show grace, extend mercy and reflect Jesus.  You can speak against systems, decisions and actions but attacking a brother or sister personally is actually an attack against the Father.  Believe it or not, but the Father loves the offender just as much as He loves the offended.  You can be sure God in His own way will take care of an erring child.  Leave that to Him.

“Therefore if you bring your gift to the altar, and there remember that your brother has something against you, leave your gift there before the altar, and go your way.  First be reconciled to your brother, and then come and offer your gift.”  (Matthew 5:23-24 NKJV)

SHOW UP!  Great victories are available for the believer, today, but you must be present to win!  Sitting in the corner and watching the world go by – and complaining about it – is not the position to which we have been called.  It may feel safer to shelter in place, but the prize goes to the one who leaves the bunker and enters the arena.  We have to show up!

There has never been a time when it has been more important for the church to make its presence known than today.  We need involvement in every area of life.  We don’t just need preachers in the pulpit – we need Spirit-filled believers in the seat of government.  We don’t just need worshippers in the sanctuary – we need strong believers in Hollywood, on Broadway and in Nashville.  We don’t just need teachers in Bible college and seminary – we need committed followers of Jesus on every school campus.  We don’t just need Christians in church on Sunday – we need disciples of our Lord to infiltrate every area of society.  We need to leave the fort and move into battle!

“You are the light of the world, a city that is set on a hill cannot be hidden.  Nor do they light a lamp and put it under a basket, but on a lampstand, and it gives light to all who are in the house.  Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father in heaven.”  (Matthew 5:14-16 NKJV)

SPEAK UP!  Bullies love to intimidate, and the devil is a big bully!  He is working to intimidate the church into silence.  If we speak up, we will offend.  If we speak up, we will run people off.  (And here’s a big one.)  If we speak up, we will lose our tax-exempt status.  I think you will agree, we hear these things all the time.

I have never liked bullies.  I have learned the only way to overcome them is to stand up to them.  When they know you know their bark is worse than their bite any advantage they had over you disappears.  It is not that difficult to beat a bully!

Our church cannot afford to be intimidated by the devil any longer.  The world is dying without hope because in too many cases we have been afraid to tell them the truth.  This will change when we decide to stop listening to culture and begin to use our voices to proclaim the full Gospel of our Lord.  Firebrands in the pulpit and firebrands in the pew – men and women passionate about truth that sets people free!  We can longer watch in silence.  It is time to speak up!

“For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ, for it is the power of God to salvation for everyone who believes, for the Jew first and also for the Greek.  For in it the righteousness of God is revealed…”  (Romans 1:16, 17 NKJV)

“But sanctify the Lord God in your hearts, and always be ready to give a defense to everyone who asks you a reason for the hope that is in you, with meekness and fear.”  (I Peter 3:16 NKJV)

I truly feel the church has come to a crossroad.  We have the choice of holding on and depending on our tried and true systems to sustain us or we can lift our sails to the wind of the Spirit and allow Him to move us to a place of transformation and revival.  I’ve got to tell you I do not believe business as usual is a smart decision.  I just believe we have been brought into the Kingdom for a time like this and God has big plans for His people.  It is probably time to turn off some noise and tune in to the Spirit.  He will reveal His will and plans to us if we will take time to listen.

Well…that was my encounter with the Lord a few days ago.  He is stirring my spirit and calling me upward.  I feel it and I hear it.  I am confident I am not the only one to whom He is talking.  As a matter of fact, I believe those heavenly radio waves are bouncing off your walls right now!  Please don’t miss what God is saying to you.  He has a Word just for you.  Be a receiver and tune it to hear it.

God is speaking.  Make sure you are listening.

5 thoughts on “God Is Speaking – Are You Listening?

  1. Beautifully put and moving. I agree and I am doing my part. I am a Social Worker who works with Seniors. I am praying with them and talking with them about God and Jesus. They are hungry for God.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Very good Bishop! The church needs to tune in to what the Holy Spirit is saying to the body of Christ. We have to be led by the Spirit and also anointed by Him if the church is going to be effective in today’s culture.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. This was really powerful and on point! Yes We have been blindsided by the 2020 pandemic and that Bully has Intimidated the Church. Yes it is time to wake up! Tune in on the same frequency So that we can hear clearly what the Holy Spirit is saying. 2020 has blurred the vision of so many “Church folk”! Thank you for obeying the Holy Spirit and sharing this with His remnant! I am listening! QEWilliams

    Like

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