The Jewel of A Waiting Banquet
"Your words were found, and I ate them, And Your word was to me the joy and rejoicing of my heart" (Jeremiah 15:16, NKJV).
How do I know it is God speaking? That question has echoed through the ages.
Among the many excellent books written on the subject, one of the best in my estimation is "Hearing God" by my retired pastor, Rev. Peter Lord. In more than 50 years of ministry, he has helped many do just that, myself included. However, he cited a dilemma.
"One of the most common experiences I have in encouraging people to listen to God is that they hear him but cannot believe that it is really the Lord communicating with them." Such doubts have arisen in my mind. I compare them to a hungry orphan shivering in winter's cold outside a great mansion. She is gazing through its windows at a banquet table spread with a mouth-watering array of meat, buttery potatoes, vegetables, pastry and more. The orphan yearns for even one crumb and perhaps a moment to warm her icy hands at the crackling fireplace.
But she believes the feast, warmth and riches have been prepared for those far more important and worthy. She knows all too well, the dark mental corridors to which a hungry soul can stray. Certainly, the Master of this great place must know and would not want such a one at His table.
Our poor orphan does not see the truth—the "feast" and the sustenance it provides, illustrates the Bible and Jesus Christ, the living Word, becoming a part of us through His personal, rhema word, available to all who believe.
Does the orphan sound familiar? Are you stranded outside in the cold of doubt?
No matter what, you don't need to stay there. God's love can reach into the darkest corners of our hearts. Scripture assures us of His compassion. If our starving souls ask Him for bread, He will not give us stones.
This means we don't have to watch from the sidelines while others feast on God's goodness. The riches of His presence is not for an elite few, but for all who believe—the "heirs of salvation."
God would not have us hear His words second-hand, or crawl around the floor groping for crumbs. The doors to His house and heart are open and as near as a Bible, a prayer or a hunger for more.
God has many wonderful things to say to you. Your place is set at His table.
PEARL TO PONDER: To teach our congregation to establish communion with God, the Rev. Lord would ask, "What two qualities do you especially love about God?" After we had a minute to jot down our answers, he would then ask, "What two positive qualities do you think God loves about you?"
We were urged not to "think" about this, but to write what first comes to mind. If you can complete this exercise, it is likely you have communed with God and sampled the riches of His table.
LOVE NUGGET: "He brought me to the banqueting house, and his banner over me was love."