Let’s keep talking about listening to God today. In case you wonder why there are food photos on my blog, it’s because God’s been talking to me in the kitchen lately – showing me things about myself that I didn’t know. Like the fact that I’ve been held back for years by my tendency to avoid chopping fresh vegetables.
See these three guys? They intimidate me.
Many recipes have never graced my kitchen because of them. But recently the cooker “wanna-be” in me decided she was “gonna be” after I posted about myRed Beans & Rice fiasco 17 years ago! The very next day I saw this recipe online:
- 1 pound Dried Red Beans
- 7 cups Water
- 1 whole Green Bell Pepper, Chopped
- 1 whole Onion, Chopped
- 3 stalks Celery, Chopped
- 3 cloves Garlic, Finely Chopped
- ½ pound Andouille or Polish Sausage, Sliced
- 3 Tablespoons Creole Seasoning
- Hot Cooked Rice
Preparation: Place all ingredients except rice in a 4-quart crock pot. Cover and cook on HIGH for 7 hours or until beans are tender. Serve with hot cooked rice and cornbread. Delicious, warm, and your man will love you forever.
I decided it was time for me to reclaim my confidence and my rightful position in the kitchen. I went shopping that very day, feeling so brave and inspired. But then I got home. My determination fizzled. Life got busy. And I couldn’t find a convenient time to cry over chopped onions. I never felt like I was in the mood to pull seeds out of the green pepper, cut the celery or face the dread of burning eyes and running mascara.
My fresh vegetables and my “gonna-be” sat in the refrigerator, getting old and brown.
Last week, I was going out of town and wanted to make a special meal for my family. But I still didn’t want to deal with the green pepper, onion and celery. Then that morning I ran by Target and happened to notice these frozen chopped onions.
(Disclaimer: I found out ‘cajun’ andouille sausage is really HOT!)
So what does this have to do with listening to God and discerning His voice? Well, first don’t you just love that in the midst of ordinary life we can stop and ask God to speak to us? To show us something simple or profound…like why our hearts are in an angst or why we’re avoiding vegetables and recipes when we have all the ingredients.
That is what I did, and that day He showed me…
- I avoid things that require something I don’t want to give.
- Dread and procrastination makes every obstacle bigger than it has to be.
- There are always tools and people available to help, if I ask or look for them.
- I need to face challenges head on with more confidence and courage.
- This lesson applies in many areas of my life.
When the answers came, I thanked God for showing them to me. How do I know it was Him? In this case, it didn’t matter. But my heart learns to trust Him more and believe that He speaks to me each time I give Him credit for giving me wisdom (James 1:5) when I ask for it.
There are times when my questions are deeper and decisions are more complicated. In those times, I have what I’ll call my “recipe for discerning God’s voice” since we’re in the kitchen today. When I sense God leading me, whether it be through an impression on my heart, circumstances or through His spirit in me, I look for Biblical consistency as the key ingredient:
- Is it consistent with God’s Word and God’s ways?
- Is it consistent with wise Biblical counsel I’ve sought.
- Is it consistent with God’s leading through doors He’s opened and closed.
- Is it there a consistent theme I’m seeing or hearing during my personal Bible study time, through sermons, Christian songs, conversations, etc.?
Hearing and discerning God’s voice is a challenge. But it is possible and He wants to speak to us. We just need to become familiar with God’s Word and His ways. We need to ask for help and look for evidence of His consistency. I have a new message on CD, called “Rest Assured“ that I’m giving away today that could help you!
In it, I talk about what keeps us from hearing God – our worries that make us weary, our need for control and other obstacles – and how we can let go of them. By talking about them and listening to God’s perspective on them through His Word and prayer, we clear the clutter in our hearts and minds. And that is what He knows we need. He invites us to come to Him to receive rest mentally, physically, spiritually and emotionally. In His presence we can find His peace, hear His voice and learn to live in the power of His promises and plans.(Note: It’s not on the P31 site yet, but I’ll try to have someone load it today.)
To enter to win, click on the word “comments” right below this post, and let me know if this message “Rest Assured” is something you need, or how the “consistency” questions might help you discern God’s voice in something you are seeking Him for. I love sharing what God’s showing me but it’s even better when I get to hear and learn from each of you – so let’s talk!
And after you’ve entered to win, click here to download a great FREE resource from Lysa TerKeurst with more ways to hear and discern God’s voice.