"Then He [the Lord] said, 'Go out and stand on
the mountain . . . And behold, the Lord passed
by, and a great and strong wind tore into the
mountains and broke the rocks in pieces . . .
but the Lord was not in the wind; and after
the wind an earthquake, but the Lord was not
in the earthquake; and after the earthquake a
fire, but the Lord was not in the fire; and after
the fire a still small voice."
(1 Kings 19: 11-12)
The Lord has never spoken to me audibly. It's either a still small voice within, a sudden thought out of the blue, a gut feeling, a warning to change course, a forgotten scripture that suddenly pops into mind just when I need it, a gentle nudge to do something other than what I started out to do, an accident that turns out not to be an accident, but rather a way of diverting my attention to something else--like when I hit a wrong key on my computer and a screen or pop-up appears showing me an option to do something I had not been aware I could do before.
Many times the prompt has not made sense to my natural mind and I have questioned whether it really could be the Lord, but when I've let my intellect persuade me to ignore it, it has usually led to regret. I remember once heading out the door to run some errands and suddenly feeling I shouldn't go. I went anyway, and as a result, missed an impromptu visit from a friend I rarely see. Another time that happened, it was a phone call I could have kicked myself for missing. These days I am more prone to obey, figuring better safe than sorry.
This morning I went to my weekly prayer meeting and gave one of my favorite praise and worship CD's to a friend. It was a CD I had been listening to in my car for the last couple of weeks. One day as I was singing along, that friend's name popped into mind and I heard that still small voice within telling me to give it to her. At first I was fine with the idea, but then I started thinking, what if she doesn't like that kind of music? Why give up something I would really like to keep when I don't even know for sure that it would be appreciated? Maybe I could ask her to give it back if it's not her thing? But even while I was thinking these thoughts, I was already writing on a sticky--"For you. Enjoy!"
The meeting had already started when I got there, and so I just put the CD with the sticky on it in front of her as I walked toward my seat. When I sat down and looked across the room, I saw this huge beaming smile spread across her face that just warmed my heart.
As we were leaving, she told me how perfect the timing of the gift had been. That very morning she had been looking for something to play in her car and was exasperated that she couldn't find any music on the radio she liked. This CD absolutely was her favorite kind of music. Her excitement was contagious, but as overjoyed as she was, I think my joy was even greater. I'm so glad I listened and obeyed.