June 21, 2016 Mind Chatter vs. God
Someone just recently asked me, "Is God's voice an actual voice you can hear? There are probably people who do hear it but I don't. Or can it sometimes be just a thought or feeling? I feel like it's my mind chatter most of the time and I am not sure if it is me or God or the Holy Spirit maybe trying to speak to me. I know not to listen to the negative fearful thoughts but it's not always easy!"
What an awesome question full of faith! She knows God is present. She knows God is listening and she knows God is speaking. She just wants to know how to distinguish whether it is her, Him, or the bad guy. This is the point with which we all must wrestle: How to hear God. My prayer for my children since they were in the womb is, "Lord, please let them hear you!" This is where Eve and Adam went terribly wrong. This is where we all jump off the abyss when we listen to the wrong voice.
Listening to His voice is based on faith, not methodology. Listening to God is responding to the thoughts, the thoughts that encourage you to do the right thing, even if it looks insane... So, if you have been in ear shot of me this weekend you have heard this story (sorry) but if not, this is a clear example of hearing God through the mind chatter, acting on faith (feeling very foolish) and watching Him work. Some of the details I am leaving out for various reasons.
We are at a sporting event a while ago and there is a young girl, probably 8 or 9 years old, who clearly does not want to participate. I watch the entire scene and hear the coach's ultimatums. My heart begins to hurt, I am distressed watching adults mishandle children's emotions and their spirits. This young girl is stubborn but I do not sense a belligerence (rarely do with children). Scene ends and the next one begins twenty minutes later with a bunch of individuals trying to coax her to get into an event she signed up. This girl is not having it. Some adults are saying, "You just have to make her." Some are pushing her (it's not obnoxious but it is) and then there is a woman who looks like she could be her sister. She is clearly frustrated and after a 5 minute plead session with more people than should have been allowed, this woman walks off with this young girl. She is clearly frustrated and will not hold the little girl's hand. Twice she shrugs off the little girl's silent request. I then begin to witness this tug of war. The woman is packing to leave and the little girl obviously does not want to. The woman is ticked.
My heart is pounding and there it begins......the Voice of God begins to walk among my mind chatter.
Act I Scene 1Mind Chatter: What should I do, God? Hey! Hold on one minute. God, why am I asking this? I shouldn't do anything. That would be just weird. (I hate being weird.)
Mind Chatter: God, I need to give them their personal space. C'mon, God. They are not even on our team. What if this is just me thinking this? How foolish will I look?
God: When have I let you down by leading you to help. When is the last time the enemy has asked you to do something like this?
Mind Chatter: Well, maybe it's a trap! I need to be wise. What am I going to say?
God: This is not about "rehearsal" this is about faith. Trust me, Lynne. Just start moving.
Mind Chatter: Ok. I'm moving.
Scene 2Lynne: Hi, uh, would you be willing to come over here? Can I speak with you?
Woman: (she is looking at me with extreme caution) Uh, Sure.
Lynne: So, what is your relationship to the little girl? I saw that she did not want to do the event. I just felt so bad, uh, well, I just wanted to tell you how bad I felt and uh. So what is the relationship? (not going real well here...little help, God?)
Woman: (not happy) My daughter!
Lynne: Can I give you a hug? (WHAT!!!!!! A HUG!!!!! YOU ARE NOW LOOKING LIKE A CREEP IN TODAY'S STANDARDS! GOD HELP ME..)
Woman: (eyebrows raised, she is weirded out) Uh, sure.
(probably the most awkward hug of the century. God, did you really want me to do that???)
Lynne: I'm the mother of six (I use this card every once and a while) and I know what this feels like. As a mom I try to remember what it felt like as a child. I think that's important to remember how I felt as a little girl. I tell my children it is important to remember how you feel. (maybe if I repeat myself again, she'll understand...I'm rambling..)
Woman: (she knows where I am going with this) Well I also did this sport and I did it.
Lynne: (this angle is not going to work) Oh, wow, that's great (i'm stumbling). So you did it. Awesome. It is obvious that your little girl did not want to do it. Maybe take some time to think about what is at the root of it. (woah that seemed pushy)
Woman: My mom, who brings her to practice, is done with this. She is not going to bring her anymore if my daughter does not change. And my daughter wanted me to bring her today and then she doesn't do it.
Lynne: I just wanted to say, you are doing a good job. There must be a reason she did not want to do this. I remember some children in the past who did not want to participate because they were perfectionists. Do you think this might be it?
Woman: I do not know.
(it is clear this woman has had enough unsolicited encouragement, or whatever you want to call what I am doing. She wanted me to be done.)
Lynne: (in an attempt to wrap it up) Well, I just wanted you to know, I am on your team!
(Oh, good one Patty Pat responses. On her team?!!! Where the heck did that come from?)
Act II Scene 1I left to go home and fifteen minutes later I return to the event. I fully expect them to be gone. However, I look and there they are. In fact they are both on the chair laughing while looking at something on their phone. My heart bursts with excitement. Then I watch her participate in her event! From the sidelines I cheer her and decide that if they walk my way I will congratulate them but if they go behind me, I will need to just let it go.
Lynne: High five (said to the little girl)! Great job you did! That was just awesome!
Woman: She actually did it!
Little Girl: Look! I got her all messed up. Now she's dirty.
Lynne: I do not think she minds a bit! She's just happy you did it. Good.
Lynne: Hey, mom, you did a great job.
The mother smiles at me. There are no thank you, no wrap ups, just a smile as she and her little girl make it back to their spot. I am one big relief.
Throughout the day God speaks to me about this event. Jesus reminds me He is not on the planet, I am His hands and His feet and it is His spirit that is guiding and directing me. Second, it is not about rehearsal, it is simply about obedience. He provides the words when needed at that moment. Third, it is also not about an amazing delivery. The Holy Spirit can take my jumbled words and bring an iron to them. It is about love. God wanted to give this mom a time out so that she can be encouraged. God gave me no advice for her, that would just be rude. He just wanted her to know He loves her and thinks she is doing a good job. God knows, and I don't. All He is asking me to do is to trust and obey.