Monday morning I woke up with a plan. I was going to spend time journaling (that’s how I process best), talking to the Lord, and listening for His response. More than anything else, I needed to hear His voice.
I was feeling vulnerable and anxious about a past failure (regret) because I spent most of Sunday allowing the “accuser of the brethren” rip me to shreds (Rev. 12:9-10; Job 1:9; 2:4-5; Zech. 3:1-2).
Instead of letting Christ’s Spirit remind me of the truth about that gut-wrenching circumstance and lead me by His “unforced rhythms of grace,” I allowed my feelings (influenced by my passive acceptance of the enemy’s accusations) to drive me around most of the day (Matt. 11:28-30 MSG).
And needless to say, I didn’t end up in a good place—mentally or emotionally.
So, Monday morning, I was determined to hear from God.
Journal out, pen in hand, I start writing. And writing led me to open one of my study Bibles to research passages on hearing from God.
I was just getting immersed into the second chapter of Habakkuk when a noisy cricket started interfering with my plan. How was I suppose to hear the still, small voice of God with that irritating distraction? (1 Kings 19:11-13 KJV)
It was so loud, I was convinced that it was inside my library. So, I got up out of my chair, moved books & papers around, opened shutters, and leaned in, listening intently to see if I could pinpoint jabbering Jiminy’s location.
After a fruitless (cricket-less) search, I was determined to put an end to that quiet-robbing insect’s already short lifespan (they only live about three months). I grabbed a flashlight, went outside in the dark (it was around 5:30 a.m.) and searched.
I couldn’t find him (only male crickets chirp).
Steven asked what I was doing and—after expressing my frustration to him—said with a grin, “Maybe God’s trying to tell you something.” (I had kind of suspected the same thing at that point.)
So, what do you do when you don’t know what else to do?
You pick up your phone and check your e-mail, right? (Well, that’s what I sometimes do.)
The subject line that grabbed my attention was “ANNOUNCEMENT: Michele’s Story on LifeToday TV!” (I subscribe to Michele Cushatt’s blog, “Making Peace with an Imperfect Life.”) She has an incredible testimony as a 3-time cancer survivor.)
Right in the middle of this post promoting her guest spot on Life Today with James and Betty Robison was this title and description:
Monday, August 28: Michele Cushatt: The Nearness of God
A woman who has faced unimaginable physical pain talks about the presence of God during those difficult times.
While the emotional pain I was experiencing couldn’t hold a candle to the severity of Michele’s physical and emotional pain, I sensed God’s desire to speak to me through her interview.
So, I went into the living room to find out when the program was airing and to set my DVR to record it.
Guess what? It just so happened to be airing at that moment, and what she said brought tears to my eyes.
Here’s a two-minute snippet from her interview:
The difficulty is we often equate the presence of pain with the absence of God. How many of us think the moment that we feel pain, that must mean that God left? And for many of us, that’s where our faith is either built stronger or is completely destroyed—in those kind of places.
I had to wrestle with that quite often. Where was He? Thousands of people were praying for my healing. And cancer just didn’t come back once; I had it three times.
Michele makes many profound, thought-provoking statements throughout this interview. If you are going through a difficult time (or even if you’re not), I highly recommend you watching the entire interview: “God In the Pain”
I’m not going to share a lot about the interview (because I want you to watch it), but here are the main takeaways I got from Michele:
- I found great comfort in Good Friday and Saturday. Picturing Jesus’ suffering in the garden helped me.
- I needed to hear God’s words of affection and love for me in that place.
- We were never meant to build an identity; we were meant to receive it (my favorite).
- There is no surgeon’s scalpel that can cut our value away from us; we simply need to receive the value He has already spoken over us.
- I have to make a choice to be captive to fear or to trust the One who has numbered my days.
- God has given me a glimpse of eternity that I couldn’t have manufactured or found any other way.
- I’m so thankful.
If you watch the show before Friday, you can get in on Michele’s promotion and be eligible to win two free copies of her book I Am: A 60-Day Journey to Knowing Who You Are Because of Who He Is, two I Am Scripture cards & easels, and a $25 Barnes & Noble gift card.
Stop agonizing over past regrets and failures and make peace with God’s sovereign plan for your life.
Don’t you agree that God can use anything He wants to in order to get our attention? Even a noisy cricket?
I’ve already ordered I Am and looking forward to hearing God speak to me through its pages.
And I’m sure you will hear about it right here on my blog.
(If you don’t want to miss any of my posts, go here, scroll to the bottom of the page, and SUBSCRIBE.)
Question: How is God speaking to you through today’s post?
Until next time,
Live Christ—Live Happy!
P.S. If you enjoyed this post and want to know more about me and the types of content I will be posting, please visit my About Page.