Daily Devotional – 8/11/17 “Can you hear Him now?”

We watched another movie in class on last night and this one was called The Sunset Limited. An hour and a half movie featuring Samuel L. Jackson and Tommie Lee Jones sitting in the apartment of Jackson after he’d stopped Jones from trying to commit suicide. [Oh, Jones didn’t believe in God.] I will not go into the full movie (you need to watch it) but there was one thing Jackson said that I had to share. He said to Jones, “You don’t have to be virtuous in order to hear God speak, you just need to be quiet!” Listen, many times we mistakenly think we have to be on some sort of spiritual level in order to hear from God. We think it takes speaking in tongue, being able to shout, prophecy or lead intercessory prayer. We think we need to have everything straight and be perfect in our being. But who is perfect, other than God? Yes, we are all called to be virtuous, that’s having high morals, however, if today is the day you happen to lack virtue, God can still speak to you. If today just happens to be a day you don’t feel like being virtuous, God can still speak to you. If you were to make a mistake today, God can still speak to you. You simply need to be quiet long enough to hear Him.

Listen, I get it; there will be some days you will not feel like being morally correct and you are entitled but don’t think you cannot hear from God. Beloved, I was a jacked up, good for nothing, raggedy, mess of a person yet God still spoke to me. I was set in my ways, attitude on ten, could curse with the best of them yet God still spoke. AND I HEARD HIM! It wasn’t because I was morally good, all the time, but it was those days I hushed and listened. Even when I could not understand why God would use me, I shut up and listened. Even when I found myself running from Him, there were nights I had no choice but to listen. God does not speak because you are good but He speaks because of your potential to be. You simply need to be quiet to listen. How will you know it’s God? Well, the bible says in John 10:27, “My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me.”

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Daily Devotional – 12/19/11 “Go by yourself sometime!”

 Sometimes in my adult life I find the need to go places by myself. It’s not because I want to do things that I don’t others to know about, but sometimes I just want to hear myself think. So many times we get caught up in the lives of our spouses, children, family and work that we forget about ourselves until we are laying in a hospital bed suffering from a heart attack or stroke. Sometimes you have to go by yourself, even if it’s just to get a little piece of your mind back. I know that you like to have girl’s night out where you drink a little wine, eat some food and then sit around to let out some of the stress of the week but have you ever thought about taking yourself to dinner? You may find that you enjoy your company more than anyone else’s. Sometimes God is trying to speak to us but we are too busy talking to others to even listen. He’ll give you an urge to go for a walk, so that he can have some alone time with you, but instead you invite along 3 of your friends. Now, you’ve missed out on what it is God is trying to tell you. John 10:27 says “My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me.” But if you can’t hear God’s voice, then who are you following?

Take for an example, you’ve been without a job for a while and one morning you wake up and God drops in your spirit the name of a company and at the same time you get an email or text from somebody telling you about a job fair at the same company. You get dressed, but not before calling a few of your friends who need jobs too, to go with you. You all go to the job fair, you interview and you think you did great but there isn’t a call back. After a week, you get a text from your friend who is excited about their new job, at the same company you were sure would call you back. Now you’re thinking that I should have went by myself. Sometimes, God has a blessing in store for YOU and not the entourage that you keep around you. It’s almost like playing baseball and the player at bat just hit a ball that is heading your direction, but before you can jump up and get it, other players from your team beat you too it. Sometimes you need to go by yourself in order to get what God has for you. If you’re standing in line and you constantly allow folk to go in front of you, you will never get a turn.

Or maybe there is this coworker who you’ve had your eye on. He is single and so are you, so when he asked you out for a drink, you quickly said yes. But you didn’t want to go by yourself so you ask your girlfriend to go with you. You all have a great time and you plan on doing it again. But a few weeks pass and he doesn’t seem interested anymore, but you can’t figure out why. Then you stop at your local restaurant to pick up a to-go order you placed, at the bar, and guess who you just happen to run into; your girlfriend and your coworker. See, he was interested in you but when you bought your girlfriend along on your “date”, he assumed you weren’t interested in him, so he moved on. Now, they are out enjoying each other’s company because you should have went by yourself.

See, most times we block our own blessings, not because we are not deserving of them but because we got other folks catching them as they are falling down. Sometimes, you have to go by yourself in order to get stuff for yourself. If you need a particular item at the store and you know the store carries many different versions of it, the only way you can ensure you get the right thing is to go get it yourself. There’s nothing wrong with having a walk, lunch, or even going to a movie with you. With the hectic world we live in, the ever changing society and the stress we face daily, sometimes peace is needed, by yourself. But how can you have an honest conversation with God when you got 5 people in the car? How can you hear what God is trying to tell you if you got 3 people walking and talking with you? Matthew 7:24 “Anyone who listens to my teaching and follows it is wise, like a person who builds a house on solid rock.” See, God has a purpose for your life but how can you do the work that he has ready for you if you aren’t listening to his instructions? It’s like putting together a bookcase without the written instructions in the box; usually you’ll make a few mistakes before you reach to get them out. It’s the same way on this Christian journey. Without God’s word and listening to his voice (his instructions) you will make a few mistakes before you reach back into the box (the bible) and get them. You have to hear God in order to do the work that he has for you to do and to be able to do it in the right way. Now, he doesn’t always speak to you but he can speak through your Pastor but if you are too busy texting during his message, you’ll miss it too. Go by yourself sometime in order to get the blessings and the instructions that God is trying to give to you. It’s alright to be by yourself, you came in the world by yourself, didn’t you? Even if you’re a twin, like I am, you still came in the world by yourself because you can’t come out together.