Have you ever tried to hold a good, heartfelt conversation in a busy restaurant or coffee shop? All the distractions — the noise, movement, other faces — they keep that conversation from going deep, and often you miss what’s said, what’s behind the words that are said.
The best conversations happen when it’s quiet. On a front porch, in the woods, at the oceanfront, on a mountaintop, on bended knee in a darkened room.
Have you conversed with God lately? I mean, has He talked to you? Just YOU?
A friend found himself at a crossroads some years ago and tells of his two-way conversation with God.
“Let’s go for a walk,” God whispered to my friend on a day when he was calling out for answers.
This man of God speaks fondly of his “Abba Father.” He knows his Father’s voice. He obeyed.
“What’s on your mind?” God asked.
And on the walk, he conversed with Abba, like a son with his earthly father.
Do you have those conversations with God? Real ones, where you talk, He listens. He talks and YOU listen.
Too often my conversations with God sound more like placing a meal order with a waitress.
“I’ll take good health and safe travels, please. With a little sunshine and blessings for my family on the side.”
A nice little chat, those conversations. A minute from my day.
“Do you hear me God? Good. You’re wonderful. I read a Psalm this morning, listened to some worship music. Now, here’s what I need today.”
In Exodus 34, when Moses obeyed God and went for that walk up the mountain, I wonder if he knew he’d be there a week, a month, 40 long days. God had a lot to say to His messenger, Moses, on the mountaintop, a lot he wanted Moses to tell his fellow travelers who waited below.
So Moses went and he listened, because he’d been there before. He’d had this conversation with the Lord and had carried God’s handwritten message to His people, only to see the message destroyed by willful disobedience. When God called him a second time, Moses went again, because of the bush, the tent meetings and the pillar of cloud.
“Thus the Lord used to speak to Moses face to face, as one speaks to a friend.” Exodus 33:11a.
Moses went when he was called again, and because of those conversations, Moses was emboldened. He asked questions, he sought promises. He moved closer to his Lord.
“Show me your glory, I pray.” And with Moses hidden in the cleft of a rock, God’s glory passed by.
In Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers, Deuteronomy it is recorded that God continued carrying on conversations with His messenger, Moses. “The Lord spoke to Moses…..” again and again. Because he went when God called him.
My friend went when God called him. He took the walk and conversed with his Father. He sought promises and he asked questions about what to choose at this crossroads. To move or to stay?
“What would this answer look like?” God asked my friend. “What can I do to show you?”
“Mushrooms,” my friend answered. “We haven’t seen mushrooms in this woods for a couple of years. If I find mushrooms, we’ll stay.”
My friend walked on, talked on. And there they were. Big, black morel mushrooms. Just a couple, off the path. Then he looked further, hiked to the spot where they’d last found bounty. Once there, he stood disbelieving…..surrounded by mushrooms. He counted ninety in all, more than they’d ever harvested.
He implored God. God sought him out. My friend listened. God answered.
Have you asked God expectantly? Closed your mouth and waited. Listened for that “still, small voice.” For a minute, for 40 days?