Sunday, May 13, 2012

Does God Sound Like James Earl Jones?

There has been once maybe twice that I have been in my house by myself for any extended period of time with a clean house and no laundry to do. I remember when G, Patrick’s mom, would come and get the kids. They would stay with her for a week. When she would take Pearce, it took me a good 24 hours to finally be able to relax without wondering where he was and what he was into. He’s just active and curious and creative, and if he’s quiet, then he’s probably doing something a little more creative than I’d like…know what I mean?

So it is a little difficult for me to put myself into Abram’s sandals when I read Genesis 15. He is alone, and a vision appears. I wonder how unsettling it was for him. I have to tell you I’m afraid I’d freak out.

Putting myself into Abram’s shoes…he has just rescued Lot, been blessed by Melchizedek, gave 10% of everything to the priest and King Mechizedek, turned down the king of Sodom, and then God comes calling. Sounds like a fast-paced roller coaster of a ride. Have you ever been through a roller coaster of a ride in life or been stressed beyond belief when God comes calling?

Then I think, “If someone today said that God showed up to them in a vision, what would people think? What would I think?”

Is his vision like a hologram? Did Abram ever try to reach out and touch the vision? Because if my Lord and Savior came to me in a vision, I don’t know what I’d do first – pass smooth out, fall on my face worshipping and weeping, or reach out to hold my Father and be held by Him. Can you imagine? Do you ever wonder? Abram could see and hear the vision, but did he use any of his other senses?

Either way, God showed up in a personal way to Abram and Abram alone in a vision. “Do not be afraid.” Yep, I think I’d be afraid. I believe I’d hear my heart pumping in my ears, assuming I was still in the vertical position. “I am your shield.” Ephesians 6:16, says when we put on the armor of God we are to put on the “Shield of faith.” It is a defensive piece of armory. It protects. We are to trust Him for our defense. “Your very great reward.” HCSB says “your reward will be great.” Here’s something else I wonder about – in this vision, what did God sound like? Since God is so big, does He have a voice like James Earl Jones? Seriously, have you ever thought about what God’s audible voice sounds like?

You know, Abram recognizes the vision as being God without any question. He doesn’t say, “Who art thou?” or “Who sendeth you?” I wonder, when God shows up in my life, do I recognize Him, His hand and His work in my life or am I too busy and unfocused to notice? Do you recognize God in your life?

Not only does Abram recognize God immediately, but Abram has the kind of relationship with Yahweh that he feels comfortable telling God what is on his heart…almost without a filter. It’s like Abram is saying, “God, what’s the point in blessing me when I have no child to endow it to?” Then Abram goes as far as to tell God, “You have given me no children.” Abram knows the source of every good and perfect gift. Abram knows who provides for his every need. Abram knows he can rely on God to provide. Abram knows he can go to God with the desires of his heart…a child. I can relate to Abram in this matter. I remember praying and asking God to remove the desire to become a mom if He wasn’t going to provide me with a child. He didn’t remove my desire nor did he remove Abram’s desire for an heir, but God doesn’t always answer the question or the problem with a solution that is inside the box. God promises Abram a son, and Abram believed. Abram believed in God for the difficult, for the impossible, for the incredible. What are you trusting God to do? What are you anticipating Him doing in your life? What prayer are you wanting God to answer?

Then the vision takes Abram outside. I wonder how this transition was made? What was going on through Abram’s mind as he followed the vision of God outside? Then God promises that Abram’s descendents would be numerous, too numerous to count. What did Abram do? He believed. There is something in beLIeVING in God Almighty that gives life. It encourages. It gives hope.

Then God reminds Abram of who He is and what He’s done and what He has promised to give Abram. Do you ever need reassurance that God is still on His throne, that He is still in control, that He is the lover of your soul? God is so good. He gives that reassurance, that reminder throughout the Word. But for Abram it isn’t enough. “HOW CAN I KNOW…” For me it’s been, How can I know what God’s will is for me? How can I know that this is what He wants me to do? How can I know that I am supposed to be in this relationship? How can I know? God reminds us. Have you seen His hand moving in your life? Have you felt the Holy Spirit stir your heart? That is how I know. God is faithful.

Abram wants God to prove it. Be careful what you ask for because it may require more of you than you are willing to give. Next up…the covenant.

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