Hearing from God can actually be a Catch 22.
My first thought is wait...every time I hear from God is a Joy!
It’s the possibility of HUGE joy.
I mean, think about it for a second. Whether you’ve been in a pit and feel far from God, or you feel close to Him, any time you hear His voice is life changing. It could help you climb out of the pit or confirm the direction you were heading.
It is also the possibility of hearing something that’s hard to hear.
Jonah heard from God and he ran the other way. David hear from God through Nathan and it CRUSHED him. Abraham heard from God and the news wasn’t all that great (sacrifice your son).
The list goes on and on.
What I heard
I’ve been doing my best to listen to God’s voice my entire life. But, fast forward to 2012…I heard from God to leave my current pastoral position. Ouch.
Yes, that was tough. I loved the people I was had the privilege of pastoring and I wasn’t ready to leave. But, I knew in the long run, I wasn’t the best fit for the what the Church needed. At the time that I left, I was dangerously close to planting a church. I have had the dream to plant a church for over 15 years.
But, I realized that the timing wasn’t best to plant a church just after leaving. He had A LOT to deal with me about!
God put the dream and seed on my heart to bring Hope to students and parents in schools. It aligned perfectly with my life vision:
To bring Hope and Laughter to the hopeless and introduce them to Jesus.
All year though, I wrestled with God about planting a Church. My wife and I had thousands of conversations about it. I talked with my counselor about all year. I talked with my inner core about it hundreds of times and I prayed about fervently and faithfully!
Every 30 days the feeling/urge/desire/call would surface again and again. I would tell God that I don’t have what it takes to plant a church. I would tell God there are better and more qualified men and women to do this. I would tell God that I’m not a part of Church Leadership any longer.
I reminded God over and over that it wasn’t a good idea!
Didn’t feel like Joy to Hear from God
Over and over, He reminded me of this call.
Over and over, He laid the dream of a church plant on my heart.
Over and over, He brought friends into my life that affirmed and confirmed the call.
Over and over, He reminded me that He brought me and my family to Central MI for a such a time as this.
Over and over and Over and over
I heard from God. I wrestled with God. I struggled with God. I argued with God.
I told him…there are plenty of Churches, there are plenty of other church planters, there are plenty of other people.
I reminded Him that I was not the best choice. Not me. Not this time.
I reminded Him that I was messy. I’ve never been a traditional Pastor. I like to break the rules. I like to have fun. I like to occasionally watch movies that Pastors aren’t suppose to watch. I don’t like tradition. And the list goes on and on.
This didn’t feel like JOY.
Then, one day, I was out on a prayer walk and God met me on the road. It was powerful, it was real, it was clear.
He affirmed and confirmed His calling to plant a Church.
It was JOY.
Amazing, Sweet, Wonderful, Incredible, Fantastic