So today is another day. One filled with more questions than answers. But hey that is part of my daily life, and I love it!
I feel like I should be writing once again. I feel I need hone those skills once again. In the past, I have been led to read various blogs, and then respond to them in a way I felt appropriate. Now I feel that I need to lead the discussion. It may not lead to in-depth discussions with each of you. In fact, it may only lead to me talking to me; with others reading what is being written. That is fine.
So, to start the conversation rolling, here we go.
For the past couple of years I have been thinking through an issue that came up related to two friends. This issue has lead to a bit of puzzlement for me. Basically this is the story goes like this:
There are times when I have felt prompted to do something, and then I did it. Period. Well 90% of the time anyway (and that is another story for another time).
With that said, I sent a message to two people who I know pretty well (one VERY well, the other I have not seen in a couple of years, but turn to him from time to time). The first part of my message was regarding the church reaching out to the non-Christian on the street. This came from prompting (and yes if I am being honest out of personal curiosity – I want to do more, but continue to hesitate). The second point of my message was from a piece I am writing about our faith. I use the analogy of a person lighting a match and how our faith is like a lot like the flame. So many things can impact the flame (our faith), and it is up to us, and those God has placed in our life, to keep our flame going.
Sometimes when I forward these types of messages I hear back from people with a thank you. Other times I never hear from them at all. I really don’t care. That wasn’t the point in me sending the message in the first place. The point for me is that I am obeying the prompting I have received.
Well the puzzlement related to this situation comes from one of the responses I received from one of the gentlemen I sent the message to.
I want to encourage you to do something that is very important to me and my relationship with you. Most importantly of our love for Jesus Christ and having relationships that advance the Gospel of Jesus Christ. I know that we have such a relationship.
Quite honestly and being very transparent here, the cry of my heart is not to receive any more of these emails. I pray and hope you understand in the Spirit of the Lord.
Honor and the Love of Jesus Christ to You, XXXXX
My question is hard to put into words. But here goes the attempt. When I have felt prompted in the past to do something like this – I have done it. Where I hesitate – I begin to question. Those moments of hesitation come when I start to think about whether this is me talking to me rather than God prompting to me. Again, there are things that have happened that give me affirmation that God really is prompting me – but not all of the time. With that said, without affirmation, I will step out in faith if I am offering words of encouragement, or pointing to a question that will further His kingdom.
I do that knowing that Jesus says “My sheep know my voice.” I can tell you that I question myself a little bit more lately because of my friend’s response. I start to wonder when I am feeling prompted to do something if it is more related to last night’s pizza than God reaching down to me. Not a good feeling.
So my question is – if I can articulate this correctly – have you found a way to determine or confirm “when something is related to God’s prompting vs. to me talking to me?”