Congrats Julie! This is the painting from last Friday's Free Art question.
A few years ago, I found myself looking at my circumstances instead of looking up towards God. I would struggle and stumble on my own, but I knew the answer to my dilemma was resting only in the bible. It was a matter of me being diligent to seek the Lord with my whole heart. So there I was listening to my pastor preaching one Sunday morning. I found myself distracted, discouraged and unable to listen to what he was teaching. All of a sudden, I felt an urgency to pray. I said, "God, I need a word from you this morning. I need to hear from YOU, only through YOUR word. Give me a word this morning."
My pastor preached on.
I kept praying.
As I continued listening, a peace came over me.
Then, as my pastor ended the sermon, there it was. His last point: Colossians 3:2, "Set your mind on the things of God, not on earthly things." Like a dagger to the heart, I knew what God was telling me. Convicted, I said Lord, "I'll stop looking at my circumstances and will look only to You. Forgive me. Help me walk forward in freedom."
God had given me a word no one else could give me. I had a specific direction to walk. Immedliately I knew He was telling me to stop looking at how my circumstances would turn out and look to Him instead. He was the one in control and heard my every prayer. But He was calling me to walk in obedience to Him despite what I could see.
Whenever I read this verse, I think back on that intimate moment where the LORD spoke so boldly to me through His word during a sermon. He has done that many other times (not through sermons!), but in other times in my life where I have come asking Him to show me a word. This particular time in my life, I was greatly discouraged and afraid. Even though I didn't know what the end result would be, I could trust in the God who was leading.
Months later, He answered my prayer in a mighty way. Whenever I think back on the months before he answered my prayer, I stand in awe of Who God is. He is a personal God who desires the best for His children. Like a father corrects his child, so did my Heavenly Father correct me. "Don't look here, look here," he said to me. I listened and began looking towards the things of God, not on earthly things. Oh, the difference that word has made in my life.
2 Timothy 3:16-17 says, "All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness, that the man of God may be competent, equipped for every good work." God's word has a purpose for our living. Let's not miss that it is there to change us.
How is God speaking to you through His word? Is He correcting you? Teaching you? Training you for righteousness?
Press into Him and ask Him to speak. Then be ready to listen.