Before we moved to Korea, I was reading something by Oh Amanda that I loved. She said that she had a Bible for each of her kids. In it, she wrote scriptures, prayers, and prophetic words that God had given her for each child. She planned to give the Bible to each child at some point before adulthood.
I prayed about it for a bit. I wanted to make sure I got a Bible that Clarissa would like because this could become her adult Bible. Or at least her middle/high school Bible. God told me to get a purple leather Bible (her favorite color has since become purple). And I had “Clarissa Faith” inscribed in it, because her name will always be Clarissa Faith, but it will not always be Faust!
I don’t have a ton of prophetic words for Clarissa yet, but I do have the one God gave me before we named her. And the things that the ladies prayed over her at her baby shower. And so they’re written in the front of her Bible.
I have, however, been pretty diligent in my Bible reading from this Bible. I decided that this will be my Bible while we’re in Korea so that when Clarissa is old enough to really make her faith her own, it will be ready for her. I’ve been in the Old Testament so far because I wanted to make sure I read the whole thing at least once in this particular Bible. When I got to 1 Chronicles and stared at another genealogy, I decided that I needed some New Testament in my life!
So I opened up to Matthew, which starts with…a genealogy. But as I read, I noticed some new things. Like the fact that Ruth was David’s great grandma. Or the fact that Uriah the Hittite’s wife became Solomon’s mom.
And then I got to Joseph. Matthew 1:18-21 talks about how Mary was pledged to be married to Joseph and because she was pregnant with Jesus, Joseph was planning to divorce her quietly. So an angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream…
And since I’ve been in the Old Testament for a bit, that sounded pretty familiar to me. There are so many places in the Bible where God sent an angel of the Lord to deliver a message. But when I read this, two things stuck out to me.
- God didn’t just choose Mary. He also chose Joseph to parent Jesus because of his character.
- I don’t need an angel of the Lord in order to hear from God.
In the Old Testament, most of the time God delivered a message through an angel. In the New Testament, Jesus did a lot of teaching. And then after His resurrection and going back to Heaven, He told his disciples to wait for a helper, the Holy Spirit. The rest of the New Testament talks about how the Holy Spirit did things through people like Peter and Paul.
Today, as a follower of Jesus, I have the Holy Spirit inside of me. I have a direct link to God and don’t have to wait for someone else to hear from God for me.
Don’t get me wrong, actually seeing an angel of the Lord would probably be cool. And maybe slightly terrifying. Why else would the angels always show up and say, “Do not be afraid?!” But it would alleviate some of the doubt that I actually heard something from God or if I just made it up in my head. I know I’m not the only one who does this…
I just wanted to encourage my reader that, you don’t have to wait for an angel of the Lord to hear from God. You can seek Him yourself. He will respond. Matthew 7:7-8 says “Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives; the one who seeks finds; and to the one who knocks, the door will be opened.”
A lot of people that I talk to want to hear from God but they don’t know how. My theory is that God is often talking to us, we just don’t always recognize that it’s Him. I always assume that if I am praying, reading my Bible, or worshiping God, that the thoughts that I get during that time are from Him. So I respond to those promptings because I would rather be wrong in faith then be disobedient. Delayed obedience is really disobedience…
One of our memory verses from VBS was James 1:5. “If any of you lacks wisdom, you should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to you.”
God can also use other people to speak to you. When your friend calls you during your bad day, it’s not a coincidence. They were probably being prompted by the Holy Spirit to call you. You can also ask your friends for advice. Or read your Bible for wisdom.