Do you REALLY want to hear from God?

Recently I was talking with someone who was struggling with their Christian walk with God. I asked her, How is your prayer life? When I have asked God for wisdom and discernment for a situation or for a particular answer, it has strengthened my faith when He responds in a way that I know it could only be from Him.

As I pondered this conversation later, I thought, I’ve been praying about something important for months.  Why hasn’t God answered me?  Immediately, It seemed that God asked, “Do you REALLY want to know what I think?”

The conversation in my head went something like this…

Of course I do!

Then why haven’t you fasted? Every other time in life when you REALLY wanted to hear from God you  fasted and He revealed His will to you. Remember that one life- changing decision you had to make years ago and God said, “No” and even though it made you sad, you knew God was right? You obeyed and now you can see it was the right thing.

Why would I not want to know God’s will in this?

As I searched my heart I realized something.

Well, I really didn’t want God to say no, but honestly, I was scared He would say yes. It had been easier to straddle the fence and just keep praying about it.

That’s when the tears came, uncontrollably, running down my face. I realized I did not completely trust God in this matter.  I had deceived myself into thinking I was submitted to God’s will, but I really wasn’t.

A few days later I heard a sermon about God just wanting our obedience. Most of the people God used to do miraculous things, were not extraordinary people, the pastor said.  They were just ordinary people with faults like the rest of us.  What set them apart was their obedience and submission to God.  They believed God.   They were humble. They knew if anything good happened, it wasn’t going to be because of them or any talent they had.  It would be because of God.

The next day I was determined to pray and fast and get serious about getting some direction from God. Before talking with a godly friend, I  asked God to use her to help me know His will about this matter.  After some conversation, she sweetly smiled at me and said, Gaye, you have asked God for months to direct and guide you. Do you not believe He has?   He has led you.  I can see it. He is guiding you, but you must follow. Just because you don’t understand it, doesn’t mean He isn’t answering.  The faith walk isn’t about understanding it all and plainly seeing way down the road.  It’s about stepping out in faith, believing God, and trusting Him with your future.

I began to realize I had a “trust” problem.  Frankly,  I was surprised. I thought I was ok with God about that and maybe I am in most parts of my life, but I wasn’t trusting God in this area. The struggle was real. It felt very similar to my salvation experience.  I wanted to let go and trust God, but…. It’s hard to give up the temptation to logically try to figure out the details. It’s hard to trust when there are so many obstacles and I can’t see any way it can all work out. But faith isn’t about seeing.  I then said, Ok God, if this is Your will, I will trust You. I felt a rush of relief and joy.  The tears came again. Did I hear God’s voice? No, but I believe He was dealing with me…nudging me to trust Him.

Hebrews 11:6 tells us faith is the basis for walking with God and pleasing Him.

A few hours later I was listening to the radio.  The host for the talk show was a lady who the Lord had been leading her and her husband to adopt a child.  Although, they had never considered being qualified to do such a thing, they finally submitted to God’s direction. The very day they signed the papers to adopt, she discovered she was pregnant.  So she soon had a newborn and a 6 month old and life became very difficult.

She later wrote a book about the things God taught her through her difficult journey.  She had to lay down her standard of perfection and be what God called her to be…a loving mother with a less than perfect life. One comment particularly struck me.

We won’t do anything great while sitting still. Often when God wants us to move, it’s out of our comfort zones. Where there is movement, there is friction.  But it’s in the heat of the fire, where God does His best work.

Isaiah 41:10

If you are wanting to do great things for God, earnestly pray for His direction in your life and be willing to follow  where He leads you.

Faith is not the absence of doubt. Faith is the presence of belief. – Author unknown

Keep looking up,

Gaye Hughes

Gaye Hughes with my grandbaby, Destin Vara. (9 months old). June 2017

Twisted Knee, Twisted Plans

33959e628ecfd5472ed22c7e5777d230Nathan (my 17 year old son) walked in the door last week after riding dirt bikes with his friend.  They got some water, chatted briefly and left. But when he entered the house a few hours later, he was noticeably limping, had this “look” on his face, and said, Mommy, I have to tell you something.  My heart sank and I immediately wondered how earth shattering this information was going to be.

I had a wreck on my dirt bike and I’ve hurt my knee. (He had a helmet on, thank goodness.) He was riding down the steep hill behind our house in fifth gear (going about 45 mph) and let the clutch out not realizing the engine had died. The back wheel immediately locked up sending the motorcycle sliding down the hill in front of him. When his leg hit the ground he heard and felt his knee pop as his lower leg twisted backwards. This was Friday evening and in our house, unless you’re bleeding to death, you don’t visit the emergency room on the weekend. So we went to an orthopedic surgeon the following Monday.

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Nathan giving his sister, Anna, a ride in March 2016

An x-ray showed no broken bones, but after an examination the doctor said, Well, he ouches at all the right times for a torn meniscus. He needs an MRI and will probably have to have surgery. The doctor went on to explain that the insurance companies are getting more and more difficult to work with concerning testing, but they would give it their best shot.

Thankfully, I received a call first thing the next morning that the insurance had approved the MRI and the doctor had scheduled one. I then talked to my friend whose husband is a physical therapist. He informed me that he thought it would be in Nathan’s best interest to get a doctor who specialized in working with youth.  I told him I appreciated his advice, but I didn’t know any other orthopedic surgeons.  He said he would try to locate one for me.

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Then I realized I had accepted an appointment to review the MRI results on a day I was going to be out of town so I carefully dialed the doctor’s number to reschedule. I heard this familiar voice and asked, Is this the doctor’s office? It was a friend from my church! I was confused because I don’t have any services on my home phone that would have dialed that number and his number wasn’t even remotely close to the doctor’s office number. Anyway, he asked me how Nathan was doing and I told him Nathan would probably have to have surgery.

He said, I have had all kinds of knee and foot surgeries.  There is a really good doctor who specializes in working with youth that I highly recommend. I thanked him and felt like God had dialed his number for me.

I then got a call from my physical therapist friend who said, Hey, I’ve been doing some checking around and I got a name of a good doctor; his name is__________. I recognized it as the same name my other friend had just suggested! This doctor is located in a big city so I took this as God confirming that we needed this doctor. I called right away and they said they would see Nathan.

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At the same time this was going on, I found out I had to be at an appointment out of state (that I could not reschedule) on the same day I was to begin my first day at my new job. (I have been a homeschooling homemaker for twenty-six years and have not worked outside the home with the exception of teaching piano lessons. Now, I’m excited to be a  preschool teacher at Muse Montessori.)

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Andrea Muse, Ashlee Bitton and I praying for all involved with Muse Montessori.

I had a knot in my stomach just thinking about having to tell my boss that it was impossible for me to be at work on my first day. This beginning date was set two months ago! I took a deep breath as I picked up the phone to explain my dilemma. When I told my boss I wouldn’t be able to make it Monday, she laughed out loud. I was bewildered.  Gaye, none of your students are going to be able to come Monday! I was getting ready to call you. The mothers want them to begin Tuesday.  You are fine. Don’t worry about it.

This brought tears to my eyes and I was so humbled to see how God was going before me and working out all the details of my problems. Walking with God doesn’t mean we won’t ever have difficulties.  Quite the contrary, Jesus told us to count the cost as we consider taking up His cross and following Him. BUT, the most cool thing is, that no matter what we have to deal with in this life, He is always right there with us…walking through our storms with us…carrying us much of the time…AND loving us all the way!

9e9d4b67fe3ecf46972e94a2eec251ecWhy am I amazed when God does what only He can do?  When I see Him work for the umpteenth time in my life?  When He delights in doing things like this for me?  When He holds this whole world in His very capable hands?  When He tells the sun and moon when to shine?  When the king’s heart is in the hand of the LORD, as the rivers of water; he turneth it whitersoever he will. (Prov. 21:1) Why? Because I’m human, forgetful, and lack the necessary faith and trust in my awesome God. He is so deserving of our praise.

Hoping you are having a praise-filled day!

Gaye Hughes

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Nathan, my hero!