Summary: I have come to this conclusion. Finding God is only difficult because of us. Not because of Him. God doesn’t want us to be in the dark. God doesn’t want us to wonder what He wants us to do. Think about it this way: if there was something you wanted y
Finding God at Christmas
“If God is with me, why can’t I hear him?
1st Kings 19
I had been away leading a conference on church growth in another church. We had experienced a good week but I was ready to get back home to my family. The conference closed on Friday night around 9:00 so instead of spending another night in a hotel O chose to go ahead and drive home. The drive was several hours and I didn’t get home until the early hours the next morning.
So when I entered the house I tried to be as quiet as possible. I put my clothes down, my suitcase and my briefcase down and went to get ready for bed. I had gone into the bathroom, turned the water on and it was at that moment that I began to hear a voice speaking. At first I thought it was coming from one of the kid’s rooms. Maybe the radio. I checked each one—no sound—they were all sound asleep.
I came back into the hallway and I could still hear the voice-then what was already strange became even more puzzling. The voice I was hearing I recognized….it was mine. I started down the stairs and the voice seemed to be getting louder and louder. I walked into the area where I had set my things down and suddenly I realized that the voice I was hearing was coming from my briefcase. I opened it and this was it. I had placed some notes on this recorder as reminders for myself and when I set the briefcase down, it jarred the recorder and turned it on and it began playing my messages.
Have you ever wished God would speak to you like that? After all we speak out loud to Him and we want to hear back. In fact I’ve had at least one time when I was a bit mad at God and I screamed at Him and I said Lord where are you??? I’m talking to you Lord, have you forgotten about me?
I have come to this conclusion. Finding God is only difficult because of us. Not because of Him. God doesn’t want us to be in the dark. God doesn’t want us to wonder what He wants us to do. Think about it this way: if there was something you wanted your children to do would you make it a guessing game? No you would simply tell them. God wants His will to be very clear.
If you take a quick survey through the Bible of how God has spoken to his people, this is what you would find..
In Exodus…God spoke through a burning bush
In Genesis…He spoke in an audible voice
In Numbers…He spoke through a donkey
In Acts…He spoke through visions
In Daniel..through dreams
Now God is not limited when it comes to communicating with His people. There are several reasons why we often do not hear God and we completely miss what He is saying to us.
1. We are often too distracted. Too busy. We constantly move from one thing to the next. TV. Radio. Ipod. Cell phone. Computer. Email. Too many distractions and too little focus.
So where do we find God? It gives me some level of comfort that the great prophet Elijah in the OT also had trouble hearing God. In this passage Elijah had killed 850 false prophets and now a messenger shows up sent by King Ahab and the messenger threatens and promises to kill him. Elijah became afraid and the Bible says that he ran for his life. He traveled a day’s journey into the desert, came to a tree and sat down and he prayed. This was his prayer, “I have had enough Lord,” take my life, I am no better than my ancestors.” Then he fell asleep and he was touched by an angel who told him to get up and eat. He looked around and there by his head was a cake of bread being baked over the coals and there was a jar of water. So he ate the bread and drank the water and laid down again.
The angel then comes back a 2nd time, touches him again and said get up and eat for the journey is too much for you. So he got up, ate and then traveled for 40 days to Horeb which is the mountain of God. And there he went into a cave and spent the night.
Now it is at that point that God came to Elijah and said what are you doing Elijah? Here is how he responds..v.10. So the Lord says to him, “go out….” V. 11. Now what we see here are 3 places where Elijah could not find God. And we realize of course that these were the first 3 places that he looked.