I know that I have mentioned this before… But God speaks in the craziest ways. In my bible study last week, we discussed about listening to God and how there is a lot of “noise” in our life that we tend to focus on instead. You see, noise can be anything from thoughts in your head, to visual stimuli, to stimuli to touch, to actual sound. Countless times the bible mentions that we need to be silent because that is where we find God and hear his voice.
I shared an example of how God personally spoke to me in the silence. One morning I woke up around 5am and I couldn’t go back to sleep. In situations like this, I usually get up and go for a jog. This particular morning I ran for about 15 minutes and got a cramp in my side (probably from not warming up properly, not because I wasn’t fit enough). So I started walking and just looking at the big ditch to my right (I honestly don’t know why they intrigue me so much… maybe it’s the wildlife that I see around and in them…) and I started to notice that there were a lot of dandelions growing along the side of the ditch. Then I got a really strange thought in my head, I actually almost heard a voice say, “Edward become a weed…”. I was like ‘Say WHAT?!?!?’… Then a verse came to mind, Matthew 28:19, “Go to the people of all nations and make them my disciples.” You see, dandelions (and other weeds) are a gardeners worst nightmare, you pull them up and then more grow back within a week (I would know because my parents made me pull weeds as a chore when I was younger…). As negative as this sounds, it’s actually a positive characteristic to have for a Christian. Let me put it to you this way, a dandelion is most vulnerable as a young plant, this is just like when a person is new to the faith. As it grows, it’s roots go deeper and stronger and then it becomes harder to be pull out (even if it is pulled out, ALL of the roots have to be pulled out or else it will just grow again). This is like a person grows more in faith, even if he/she is cut down, as long as the roots are there that faith will grow back. As it grows older, it goes to seed and as the wind blows (or when kids pick them and blow them), the seeds spread and take root somewhere else and a new cycle begins. Now this represents a person who has grown up enough in faith and has confidence to share his/her testimony/story/faith with other people.
Another thought then came to mind… Weeds are persistent and hard to completely get rid of, but they are still vulnerable. If a gardener had enough time and effort, they could get rid of all the weeds in their garden; and then any weeds that grow would be new weeds (which are the easiest to remove). So I asked God, “Why do you want me to be something that is so vulnerable?” Then this verse came to mind, John 15:18-25, “18 If the world hates you, keep in mind that it hated me first. 19 If you belonged to the world, it would love you as its own. As it is, you do not belong to the world, but I have chosen you out of the world. That is why the world hates you. 20 Remember what I told you: ‘A servant is not greater than his master.’ If they persecuted me, they will persecute you also. If they obeyed my teaching, they will obey yours also. 21 They will treat you this way because of my name, for they do not know the one who sent me. 22 If I had not come and spoken to them, they would not be guilty of sin; but now they have no excuse for their sin. 23 Whoever hates me hates my Father as well. 24 If I had not done among them the works no one else did, they would not be guilty of sin. As it is, they have seen, and yet they have hated both me and my Father. 25 But this is to fulfill what is written in their Law: ‘They hated me without reason.’”
As harsh as this sounds, there is also comfort that can be found in Matthew 5:11-12, “11 Blessed are you when people insult you, persecute you and falsely say all kinds of evil against you because of me. 12 Rejoice and be glad, because great is your reward in heaven, for in the same way they persecuted the prophets who were before you.”
So I pray that I can spend more time in silence so that I can hear your voice God. I pray that I can take to heart everything that I learn from you.