The Sunday TYM.E.S. (Meditations, Encouragement, and Sharpening in Him)
Greetings, and Grace and Peace to you from God the Father and Our Lord Jesus! As you read this, Lord willing, I have just returned from spending almost a week with Sandy Landry, writing and editing the life story of a prophetess and friend of mine named MINNIE. As the work nears completion, we are so thankful for your prayers.
This week I have chosen to reprise the very first article published on January 29th. It’s the first chapter of this series entitled “Getting Started With Hearing God’s Voice.” For those of you who missed it, the entire series will soon be available on the website, chapter by chapter. For those who read the “dangler” at the end of Chapter 19 and are waiting to hear what happened next, well, hopefully I will continue the saga in Chapter 21.
I want to take this moment to thank a special friend named Lisa who has prayed for this ministry. There have been many rough moments in the writing of the MINNIE book, and much prayer has gone forth, especially over a few areas of serious blockage. Lisa had no way of knowing this, nor did she know I was spending this week with Sandy to “look for the missing link”, as it were. So, last Saturday, before leaving for Sandy’s home, I received this email from Lisa in my inbox:
I wanted to say…(kind words! Thanks!)
I also feel that God would like for me to tell you that within the next week that He is going to make something very clear to you that you have been wondering about for quite a while now. I feel that I am to also tell you to be aware that God is going to give you an answer to a specific question and it’s going to be like a missing piece to a puzzle being found…a missing link that will help connect and network and help bring completion and satisfaction. Just felt strongly to say that so I had to be obedient.
God bless you,
I not only want to thank Lisa for the prophetic word, but let her know truly and publicly that she is hearing God with great precision and timing. This word came to pass just as prophesied! About midweek Sandy and I hit an insurmountable wall. We talked until we were hoarse. We had both prayed, separately and together, and the answer just wasn’t manifesting. Finally we ran out of steam and tried to sleep. At about 4 am Thursday I woke up and heard the next step, the one that has eluded us for many months. The Lord is a great writer; He can speak to anything, even an old British sports car, as I once found out. Anyway, I spent the next 4 hours sketching out what I had heard. Sandy walked in and took off with it and made it even better than I could have imagined. Praise the Lord! He truly showed us how to finish the book, and I think this has been the missing piece that will help us bring it to completion and satisfaction.
Praise the Lord for friends who care to pray and share. Thank you again, Lisa. We started the week with great expectancy that this word gave, and He did not disappoint! There was divine fruit and redemption in this word! Thank the Lord.
“A word fitly spoken is like apples of gold in settings of silver.”
Getting Started with Hearing God’s Voice
“For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, these are the sons of God.”
In answer to those who have asked, I plan to share with you the story of how the Holy Spirit began to train me to hear His voice for others. In fact, He’s still in the process-as He is in so many ways with all of us- so the saga continues. But I believe He will use the hearing of this story to impart to you the hunger for more of Him and the desire both to see and to seek His training in your gift. I say “to see” His training because He may already be speaking to you more than you think.
There is a great deal of scripturally sound teaching readily available to us on hearing His voice and even on learning to prophesy. Perhaps you are familiar with Kent Simpson’s website? Anyway, the story you are about to read, as it appears in weekly installments, is not to be considered a how-to manual or a doctrinal thesis. It is merely the record of how He began to reveal more of Himself to me than I had ever known or understood to be possible on an ongoing basis.
The Holy Spirit will encounter each of you in His own way, and in the end, we each represent but one of the “books that should be written”
Much of what I would like to tell you about my past is being written up in a book which Sandy Landry and I are creating as a joint project. So you will have to wait for the book in order to read about the exciting individuals who have crossed my path in the Lord. For now, I plan just to focus on the training the Holy Spirit began in me starting in 2008.
It wasn’t a case of just “deciding” one day to start writing prophetically on behalf of others. In fact, most of my life was spent in churches which viewed contemporary prophesying as either heretical, dangerous, or “best left to the experts”. No one had these gifts anymore, and even if occasionally a glimmer of the miraculous broke through, it needed to be tested with a high degree of suspicion. Prophets were guilty until proven innocent. Even those who accepted that prophetic manifestations might occur were quick to ignore to downplay the supernatural, while insisting love was and is more important anyway. Not wanting to argue over the primacy of love, I stifled any curiosity I might have had. Who needed prophecy when the church had the Holy Scripture? I was thankful for Wycliffe and Tyndale and Luther-as we all should be, of course. But day of the great freedom fighters was past, and now we the laity had the Word at last. If true modern-day prophets did exist, it seemed the historic church had been getting by without them just fine. Or so I thought.
“Everyone knew” that, at least for the average Christian, visions and prophecy all ended when the Apostle John went on to glory in the first century. Now, if someone pressed me, I probably would have said that as an open-minded, educated person, I had to admit that MAYBE it could happen again, but visions and prophecy would only for an extremely important servant of God who had fasted for weeks and was commissioned for world evangelism. Two of my most beloved pastors had told stories about prophetic words spoken over them; I was awed over the accuracy of their confirmations. These were both men with huge ministries. At one point I had actually befriended and elderly lady who called herself a prophetess. I was not sure I could believe her stories, and 30 years had passed since our talks, so that I only dimly remembered her stories. But surely prophecy was not for the rank and file, such as myself. Our job was to stick with the Written Word.
I was a working woman who didn’t have a lot of time to read and keep up on the 21st Century Church. Like a LOT of folks in local churches across America, I thought I had enough to do, just keeping up with my family and my job and the overseas ministries I read about and supported financially. Bill Haman, Bill Johnson, John Paul Jackson, John Wimber, Bob Jones, Patricia King? Who were these folks? Never heard of them. The prophetic movement, Latter Rain, Toronto Airport? I would have said, what is this? New Age? I had not a clue, and nothing in my church experience had filled me in that anything had changed in the spiritual climate in the last hundred years. I didn’t watch much TV. No time. I was BUSY. I played my violin for worship services and was involved in a tiny prayer group in a local church. That was my ministry, and God and I had it figured out that this expenditure of time and energy was something we could both be comfortable with. Or so I reasoned, in a way that echoed the sentiments of many others who say: “This is the way I hear God, by reading the Written Word!”
Then something happened.
In January 2008, a fellow Christian, a trustworthy friend of mine, and one not given to flights of fancy, approached me and said he had seen a vision and heard an audible voice, and this message directly concerned me.
No, I won’t tell you what the vision said, or what he saw. What is important here is that I had no grid for processing this kind of event. I tried frantically to think back on those few times in over 40 years of Christian experience that I had heard Him personally. Ok, yes, there were a few, come to think of it; feeling cornered, I had to admit it. At 51 years old, there had been some voices and visions, but I had suppressed these things and never discussed them in polite Christian company.
That night, thinking about the vision, I lay awake all night, shaking. This vision had seemed true. What just happened? Was this for real? Was this safe? Was it God, or the enemy? How could I ever share this with my prayer group-or my husband? They would think I’d flipped out if I said I took it seriously. Was God trying to get through to me? Why hadn’t HE just told me Himself? OK, yes, I had been praying over this same issue lately in that little church prayer group and this vision seemed like a direct answer to those prayers. Was this vision and voice His answer? Why didn’t He just unfold the answers to my prayers in the slow, laborious process of time, through the accumulation of events, the way it seemed He most often did? Should I be shocked that He would answer me THROUGH SOMEONE ELSE in a big flashy way? Wait: was He still operating the way He had in the book of Acts after all?
I prayed all night and finally heard HIM say something in my spirit. I had not heard the Lord in this way in a really long time. Next week I will tell you what HE said.
I just want to say it was my pleasure reading your email message. The Lord has been shaping me and getting me to be stronger in all the weak areas of my life. I have become stronger in the Lord and closer to the Lord since i became born again Christian. My brother has just gotten saved as well. He was the biggest distraction and always against me because he was so into Catholicism! But all that changed within 4 months. The Lord got to him and now he reads the WORD and his eyes are opened and i pray that the rest of my family sees the truth as well as my brother did. It all requires patience and trusting in the Lord because this is only a trial for me. I have become really strong in not giving up.
I got a prophecy from Kent about a month ago, it lifted me higher and made me feel so much better knowing i received words of encouragement from the Lord! I believe in miracles and in anything that involves the Lord with all of my heart.
— From Sarah
“But without faith it is impossible to please Him, for He who comes to God must believe that He is, and that He is a rewarder of those who diligently seek Him.”