Those of us who have been or are parents remember how, when they were small, our kids wore their feelings “on their sleeves” so to speak. Now, as they grew older, their thoughts and attitudes became more subtle, more hidden, stuffed down inside. But if we were doing a thorough job, we knew them well enough to read their attitudes fairly well. Because, when the kids tried to camouflage their true reactions, they were put in judgement by the rules and regulations we had laid upon them. God says in His Word, “. . .My Word judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart.” (Hebrews 4: 12). Continue reading Growing Up to Hear God | Jay Fesperman (3/3)
That verse – Ephesians 2: 8 – goes on to say of faith, “It is a gift of God.” Now, just as the parental “gift” of milk to the baby is gradually replaced with solid food, so the basic gift of FAITH becomes “solid food”. But your FAITH, that solid food, being for the mature, requires constant use, and, as we use it, “We are trained by it.” (Hebrews 5: 14).
So God lays back so that we can be exercised by the use of our GIFTS in order to “distinguish good from evil” – making correct decisions for ourself. And, as we constantly exercise the GIFT of FAITH, we find that we have come to trust God! Almost as much as He trusts us! Continue reading Growing Up to Hear God | Jay Fesperman (2/3)
Have you ever been discouraged by what seems to be the disappearance of God from your horizon, the inability to hear His voice? I believe one of the most wide-spread problems that young Christians face is that they seem to lose touch with the Lord. That intimate fellowship with Him fades away, and “I just cannot hear the voice of God for my life anymore.” As they move along the path of maturity, many young Christian men and women come into times when confusion creeps in, and it becomes really difficult to know what choice to make or who to listen to. Continue reading Growing Up to Hear God | Jay Fesperman (1/3)
The Lord told Solomon to ask for whatever his heart desired and He would grant it. Solomon asked for wisdom and God gave him great wisdom, but He also gave him all the wealth and riches for which he had not asked. God proved to be faithful to Solomon, and He proved to be faithful to me. Jesus said to His disciples, “Ask anything of the Father in My name, and He will grant it.” So, in the FAITH that is ours “in Christ”, we can ask the Lord God for anything “in the name of Jesus” and then we can expect the Lord to give it. But what is the KEY? It is the FAITH that we have, but we must be sure that we have it “IN CHRIST”. You see, as we have said, everybody has “faith”, because it is built into the system which makes us tick in every way. But to exercise that faith for the things of God, our FAITH must be “in Christ”. Continue reading The Substance of Things Hoped For | Jay Fesperman (3/3)
But HEAR THIS! It’s very important. I heard a lot about Jesus Christ, and I read a lot about Jesus Christ before I came to know God. What was there within me that kept me from knowing God in those days when I was hearing so much about God and Jesus? My carnal mind – that is, the mind of my “nature” – was reading and hearing all this. It did not suit or please my “nature”, because my “nature” knew that a major change would take place and that the “natural man” would not have the last word. That element of faith within me was doing nothing but looking out for my safety in the natural, and it totally ignored the spiritual me. My “nature” was on the throne, and it didn’t need or want a God. My “nature” was god, and I was in subjection to it. Continue reading The Substance of Things Hoped For | Jay Fesperman (2/3)
On many occasions I have been thrown together with a person whose language was completely foreign to me, and mine to him. Trying to convey a thought to another under these circumstances is most frustrating. The ability to understand one another demands a commonly understood language. My conversation sounds like so much gibberish to someone who only speaks and understands only German or French or the Lunda tongue of southern Africa. And theirs to me. It’s wild babbling!
We talk about hearing the Word of God. What language does God speak? Before you try to answer that, with what kind of mouth does God speak? Do His words have some kind of physical effect on my ear drums and I hear WORDS? Just what IS the Word of God? Continue reading The Substance of Things Hoped For | Jay Fesperman (1/3)
In the same way that nature goes through seasons, so do we in our lives and in our relationships with the Lord. Recently a close friend and I were talking about how we both feel like we’re in a “silent” season in our lives. It seems like no matter what we do – pressing into the Lord every day, trying to keep our attitudes in check, talking to mentors, etc, etc – we just can’t hear Him speak. It was amazing how the more we talked we kept identifying with what the other one was saying. We talked about what we thought He might be trying to teach us. Do we learn things from our daily devotions and teachings that we hear? Of course. But as great and wonderful as all of that is (and it really is) we both kept finding ourselves over and over again in the place of crying out. I know I did. “Lord! There has got to be more than this, I just know it! I miss Your voice. Where is it? Why can’t I hear it? What do I do? What are You saying? I need You! Please don’t be silent!” Sometimes I found myself crying out while driving and hitting the steering wheel, sometimes while crying myself to sleep, sometimes quietly in my spirit while someone else was sharing what the Lord had directly and intimately spoken to them. Continue reading Like the Canaanite Woman: Pressing Through the Silence