Obeying the voice of God can lead to a scary journey

Published 5:49 am Sunday, May 21, 2023

Hearing God’s voice can be difficult.
God may not speak in an audible voice that we can hear with our natural ears.
Sometimes He may speak to us during prayer by reminding us of certain scriptures in the Bible.
Other times He may give us a desire to do something for Him or for someone else.
I’ll never forget the first time I experienced God “speaking” to me.
I was a teenager working with a fundraising organization to help raise money for the local Fire/Rescue Department.
The organization brought some of their own staff to train local people to help with the telemarketing campaign.
One of my jobs was to deliver complimentary concert tickets to anyone who gave $100 or more to the fire department during that fund-raising drive.
While working there, I met some unique individuals.
One was a biker who looked like he was a member of the Hell’s Angels motorcycle gang.
He stood 6’6” tall, covered with black leather and chains from head to toe, with a ponytail that hung down to his waist and a full beard.
Needless to say, he looked very intimidating to me!
Suddenly, I felt like I needed to talk to him about God’s love and invite him to church. I immediately dismissed the feeling.
I thought, “What if I say something to him and he gets mad or offended?”
I envisioned my picture being broadcast on the evening news with the headline: “Local Teen Slain By Rampaging Biker.”
Fear gripped my heart, so I held my tongue.
I didn’t feel well the rest of that weekend. I couldn’t sleep. I couldn’t shake the sensation that I had disobeyed God.
I promised God that if He would give me another chance to see that biker then I would share my faith with him.
On Monday afternoon, I was sitting in the lounge at the fire/rescue building, waiting to make some more deliveries.
Suddenly, the front door swung open and guess who walked in?
Yep, the biker.
He had come by to pay his pledge.
The station was unusually busy that day so he decided to take a seat and wait —right next to me!
I hadn’t been a Christian very long, but I didn’t need a rocket scientist to tell me that God had answered my prayer. He was giving me another chance.
“So, how was your weekend?” I asked him nervously.
“Terrible!” he growled.
“Friday night I went to the local bar to get a couple o’ beers. I ended up gettin’ into a fight and was thrown out! I think the bouncer busted my eardrum.”
“Then, I went home and lay on the couch. I was exhausted and hung over. I fell asleep with a lit cigarette in my mouth. It fell out while I was sleeping, caught the couch on fire and I got third-degree burns on my right hand.”
After showing me the bandage on his hand, I knew then why God had wanted me to talk to him on Friday.
I went on to talk to him about God’s love, power and forgiveness.
I wish I could say the biker got saved that day.
He didn’t, but he did listen to what I had to say.
The important thing is: I learned that if God impresses you to talk to someone—it’s a good idea to obey.
You never know what may happen before you see them again.
In 1 Samuel 3, the Bible tells us about a young boy named Samuel who was growing up in the temple, helping Eli the priest.
One night, God called Samuel while he was sleeping.
Samuel thought Eli had called for him so he ran to the priest’s chambers.
When Eli awoke and realized it was God calling for Samuel, he said, “Go, lie down, and if He calls you again, say: ‘Speak, Lord; for your servant is listening.’” (Verse 9)
We could all learn a valuable lesson from Eli.
The next time you feel like God is trying to tell you something, stop what you’re doing and say, “Speak, Lord; for your servant is listening.”
And then be obedient to whatever He asks you to do.

Rev. Doug Johnson is the senior pastor at Raven Assembly of God in Raven, Virginia.

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