How often do you feel promptings in your spirit? Do you question their origin as I do many times, thinking “I must have just made that one up!” Or do you immediately respond with, “Yes, Lord I will do what you say?” The more I am in God’s word and spending time with him each day, the more I realize that the Holy Spirit prompts me to do things whether ordinary, out of the ordinary or extraordinary!
I had one such “out of the ordinary” prompting a few weeks ago in a hotel room. The day before, my husband and I drove five hours to deliver our college son’s furniture and household items. Later that day my husband traveled further south to enjoy a weekend of fishing while I stayed to do the momma thing – help unpack, clean and arrange furniture. The king sized bed at the hotel room was a welcome sight that evening. Since I would be alone the next morning, I set my alarm for 6:00 am to spend time with Jesus in his word.
After brewing and preparing my first cup of blonde and sweet coffee, I opened the First 5 App titled “One Message, Many Methods” based on 1 Corinthians 9:19. The apostle Paul stated, “Though I am free and belong to no one, I have made myself a slave to everyone, to win as many as possible.”
The author wrote about Paul’s passion to bring people to Jesus and how he “became all things to all people” (1 Corinthians 9:22b). Oh, how I want to have that same passion. I pray for boldness and for God to give me compassion for the lost. I can tell He has planted that seed and he is patiently waiting for me to mature in his word and love for Jesus.
I am a natural talker, so one would think I would have no problem sharing Jesus to the lost. I often say one of my gifts is the “gift of gab” because striking up a conversation with others comes easy for me. I can talk to anyone about anything, but as soon as a spiritual subject comes up, my tongue goes on sabbatical. I have struggled with this for many years. God knows my heart and the exact steps I need to take. That is why I believe he instructed me to leave my First 5 App notebook on Romans and 1 Corinthians 1-9 in the hotel room.
I argued with God that those were my notes and I needed them. He gently reminded me that I have studied these books of the Bible before and have notebooks at home. I argued that something personal might be in them, and again he gently instructed me to look through it and see if that were the case. It was not! I was quickly losing this argument, so I decided a different setting was in order – the shower!
You can’t run from God even in the shower!
He reminded me that my ways are not his ways, and his thoughts are not my thoughts (Isaiah 55:8). I told God it was a dumb idea because the housekeeping staff would just throw the notebook away. (Can you believe I told God His idea was dumb?!) My name wasn’t in it, nor any contact information, so I assumed it would just be tossed with the used paper coffee cups in the trashcan. Again, God reminded me that many times in the bible he told people to do things that seemed ridiculous to the natural man.
He told Abraham to sacrifice his only son (Genesis 22:2).
He told Joseph he would rule over his brothers through a dream (Genesis 37:5-9).
He told Moses to raise his staff to part the Red Sea (Exodus 14: 16).
He told Joshua to march around the city of Jericho seven times then blow the trumpet so the wall would come crashing down (Joshua 6:2-5).
He told Mary she would give birth to a child although she had never been with a man. (Luke 1:31-34).
So, why did I think I was any different? Who was I to think I did not have to obey God because it wasn’t reasonable?
So I obeyed. Simply obeyed. By the way, my prompting wasn’t nearly as difficult as those listed above.
As I gathered up my things, I placed the notebook on the unmade bed where it wouldn’t be missed. Rolling my overnight bag towards the door, I took one last peek at the notebook. I shut the door, hoping to see a housekeeping staff, but none was in sight. This time God did not allow me to see the fruit, if any, of my obedience. I may never know if those notes would encourage or strengthen anyone in that hotel that day or another day in the future. But because I filled those pages with scripture I know this is true; “The kingdom of God is not a matter of talk but of power” (1 Corinthians 4:20). I had a firsthand lesson on how God has one message and many methods to reach those who need him. So the next time I have a prompting in my spirit, hopefully I will not argue with God or resist obeying.