THE VOICE OF GOD

Those who have read my blogs over the last two years realize that I was divorced this year.  March 3, 2011 to be exact.  My ex-husband relapsed after 13 years of sobriety.  Then for two years, 2009-2011, it was a heartbreaking fight with rehab, periods of doing well, and then... those ten steps back to that place that dictates we start all over again. 

I didn't leave him.  I'm sure I would have gotten around to it; was heading in that direction when he had a near fatal auto accident.  He was a few days in the trauma unit before he could say who he was.  I wasn't looking for him because of the history.  My heart sank when I realized I would have to bring him home.  Coming home meant I would be hoping; once more emotionally invested and therefore open to even more hurt.  He was facing surgery, had a serious head injury, and a broken shoulder and yet it was no more than six weeks before he was off chasing the slavery of the past. 


At every juncture I was hopeful, but there was of course another woman who was as obsessed with him as he was with his addiction; right there with him.  In our only conversation she told me that God didn't hear her prayers anymore.  I told her that when we sin persistently and often it sits as a barrier between us and God.  In all the years I've done deliverance and battled satanic influence I felt a pervasive and clear oppression around this woman.  When I saw him today I touched his arm and felt that same spirit coming off of him. 


I think what is most hurtful about all this is not so much what I went through, but those people who somehow believe that when we suffer it's our fault.  We brought this on ourselves and trouble and heartache become an occasion to gossip and lie. It's been a hard two years, but I'm happy when I think of how Christ has protected and cared for me.  Friends fell away, but others came.  Father God, YAHWEH, I give endless praise to You... 


Today I saw the shadow of the man I'd perhaps, loved too much.  If I were feeling up to symbolism I guess I'd write a poem.  Instead I came home and slept for three hours; something I almost never do in the middle of the day.  We still have mutual business and I needed him to sign some documents.  He's very charming.  Personable.  I have a photo of him standing on a lovely beach on one of the islands.  The waves are high and he stands with one hand on his surf board with a smile that says, "life is beautiful, life is fun."  He's bare chested, handsome and young.  Today... oh today his hands shook.  He looked gaunt and while the warm rich tone of his voice was the same and I knew he wanted me to think he was fine...  well I know him.  I know him well and I didn't need to see his gaunt face to know.  I knew. 


God is putting ever more distance between us and this time, I might have slept for 3 hours upon returning home, but there were no tears.  I didn't feel that yearning to see him restored in the old way of imagining that I could help him. I recall visiting him in rehab.  We'd had some kind of group meeting and the father of a thirty something year old girl who had driven her family into horrendous debt and heartrending loss said to me, "We just have to keep trying don't we."  Agreement was on my lips when I felt that tug, that spiritual catch deep in my soul.  Not only did I NOT have to keep trying, but it wasn't wise or smart to keep doing so. I set some limits... some boundaries that day.  They were very specific.  I wasn't selling God short in doing so.  I know my God is a God of miracles.  I've written about this in previous blogs without being as direct as I am here and at the moment I don't feel up to sermonizing.  What can you say about pain that threatens to swallow you?


But it didn't because along the way, in the midst of all this, I heard the authoritative word of God.  Now I'm not talking about a feeling. I'm not talking about reading a passage of scripture that sings to our souls. I'm talking about the actual voice of the Father, YAHWEH, my Savior, Jesus Christ as clear and definitive as I've ever heard anyone speak.

Does God speak directly to us?  Speaking of Himself and the Father Jesus said: Truly, truly, I say to you, he who does not enter by the door into the fold of the sheep, but climbs up some other way, he is a thief and a robber.  But he who enters by the door is a shepherd of the sheep.  To him the doorkeeper opens, and the sheep hear his voice, and he calls his own sheep by name and leads them out (John 10: 1-3).

Jesus Christ is the Shepherd (Psalm 23).  Those who know Christ exist in Him.  Saved by grace we can not only hear His voice, but we can learn to discern God's voice from that of self, the world, or demons; because lets be honest.  There are too often a lot of  thoughts/voices in our head.  When he puts forth all his own, he goes ahead of them, and the sheep follow him because they know his voice (John 10: 4).   

Read 1st Samuel 3: 1-10.  The young boy Samuel didn't immediately recognize God's voice.  Intimacy with God; knowledge of scripture trains us to the gift of supernatural discernment.  Pray and ask for this gift and then create the spiritual climate in which it can thrive.  Gideon, on the other hand, didn't want to hear the voice of God.  He put several fleeces before he Lord before he finally stepped soul-heartedly into a divine calling.  Read Judges 6-8.

This is what happened when I heard the audible word of God at a time when I most needed it. 


I had been invited to speak at a church only this hadn't been clearly communicated to me.  I thought I'd just been asked to drop by with a few of my books and talk socially with some people who "might" be interested in WOOD'S END.  When I arrived the pastor gave me some instructions on addressing the congregation.  Brett had driven me and gone off to do an "errand" telling me he'd be right back.  Instead he abandoned me at this strange church where I knew only a few people and with no ride home.  I could feel myself beginning to fall apart.  I knew that once again I'd lost him; knew what he was chasing.  After a period of sobriety he had decided to take those ten steps back into slavery.  My name was announced and as I stood a marvelous peace came over me.  God said, "I"m taking you somewhere Brett's not going." 


I stood at the podium and Jesus let me talk about how HE had led me to write Wood's End and what I hoped would come out of that.  I talked about deliverance as I often do and all the while the voice of God... not what he said, but that he spoke - filled me with a purpose long before I ever began the process of interpreting for myself all that was said and implied in God's clear authoritative word to me; His daughter. 


And as if I could ever forget, God then sent me an added blessing.  He sent my friend Ann Jones up the street, four doors away, to ring my doorbell and tell me the very same message word for word.  God had told her and told her to tell me the very same thing!  Isn't Jesus wonderful?  I have tears in my eyes as I remember this.  Father YAHWEH, I give You endless praise!


Living with an addict is always about living with and fighting darkness.  Brett knew he couldn't have me and that lifestyle.  Although we are divorced and it's getting easier I'm still living with the consequences of his choices.  I may lose my house.  Ironically my foreclosure date is the date of his birthday.  I'm praying every day for God's rescue, that Wood's End now on kindle and nook will sell and that I can have the sanctuary needed to be productive in my writing.  I've mourned for Brett and for the many ancillary losses that accompany the disaster of addiction.  But... that season is over and it really is true.  To everything there is a season.  Now to Him who is able to do far more abundantly beyond all that we ask or think, according to the power that works within us (Ephesians 2: 20).  


All his promises are Yes and Amen!  For as many as are the promises of God, in Him they are yes; therefore also through Him is our Amen to the glory of God through us (2nd Corinthians 1: 20).  

Again I say to you, that if two of you agree on earth about anything that they may ask, it shall be done for them by My Father who is in heaven (Matthew 18: 19).  Let us pray together.  I pray that God blesses each person who reads this. 
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