Beyond the Pulpit

Matthew 16:17-18 (MEV)

17 Jesus answered him, “Blessed are you, Simon son of Jonah, for flesh and blood has not revealed this to you, but My Father who is in heaven.

By PASTOR ALLEN WICKSTROM

Abundant life Assembly of God

Last week I wrote about Jesus asking His disciples the question, “who do you say that I am?” Peter responded by proclaiming that, “You are the Christ, the Son of the living God.”

Jesus told him that this kind of revelation and understanding wasn’t something that the human intellect or mind could come to know. Instead, it was divine understanding that can only come through God revealing it to him.

Did you know that God wants to talk to you and that He wants you to know Him personally? The Bible clearly says that, “you will seek and find Him if you search for Him with all your heart and soul” (Deut. 4:29). I have found through the years that God can and will speak in a multitude of ways if I take the time to listen. It is such a joy to get a fresh word or revelation of who God is. Sometimes He has spoken through sermons or reading the Bible. Other times it is through nature or during the night when everything is quiet. Whenever God has spoken or ‘revealed Himself in a new way it’s because I have stopped long enough to focus on what He has to say.

Have you ever had a job or project to do and after it’s done, heard these words, “I don’t think that you had your ‘heart’ in it.” What does that mean? It means that you didn’t give it your all. You hadn’t invested everything that you had into doing it. Hearing from God is the same. When is the last time that you set aside everything else that clutters up your life and just focused on God?

What does it mean to put your soul into seeking God? It means that you have engaged your mind and emotions into the pursuit of God. You have to think about it, and plan ahead of time how you are going to spend time listening to God. And yes, that’s right – your emotions. We need to be emotionally invested in hearing from God. He wants and needs our undivided attention. Nothing can be more frustrating than someone who isn’t really listening because they are distracted by other things.

This week is the beginning of Lent for many churches and it is a time that we set aside things for the Lord. How about spending time with God to hear what He has to say to you?