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God help me decide.................
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God help me decide!

Isaiah 58:11”The LORD will guide you continually, And satisfy your soul in drought, And strengthen your bones; You shall be like a watered garden, And like a spring of water, whose waters do not fail.”

Have you ever felt that you don’t have enough time to pray and wait for an answer? I was asked to pray and inform God’s will regarding the job transfer of a Christian lady from one state to a far off remote place which was not yet developed; since her son had to join a professional college, she was worried about his education - tickets had to be booked, decision made immediately and finalized. Immediately after giving me the prayer request, the lady started sobbing over the phone.  I calmed her down and said, ‘let us just not move for the next two days and pray about it’; though thoroughly worked up, she conceded to my request. She promptly called me after two days, I had prayed sincerely about this and said, ‘trust God and take up the transfer, God would take care of you.’   She replied with a pause, ‘ I was planning to travel to the head office, give a gift to the concerned person in the department and plead for transfer to another location.’  I said, ‘it is not gift but bribe which would bring curses in the life of your kid.’ How crooked and wicked are we!

Have you ever gone through a situation where you had to make a decision immediately? You just had 24 hours to decide? You just got to call up the person in two hours and give him an answer?  We all have had umpteen such situations: job, marriage, transfer, travel, huge investment and so on.  What do we do during such critical times?  There would be some who quickly, hastily mutter a word of prayer and go ahead with their decision, few frantically call up relatives and friends to ask their opinion, few would rashly enter the deal with the thought ‘God knows what is good for me’, there are another group of believers who would say ‘ the way is clear so I would go’, and there are huge gamut of Christians who would just close their eyes and move forward. How flawed are we in our thinking!

I am reading the book ‘Dare to call me Father’ by Bilquis Sheikh for the second time, the book is an autobiography of the conversion of a highly educated muslim divorced woman to Christianity. I love the way the intelligent woman from an aristocratic family accept the Word of God as ‘God’s direct spoken Word’ and embraces it adorably; when she gets a prompting in her spirit reminding her of a particular scripture, she does not dismiss it carelessly but whole-heartedly accepts it. The highlight of the entire book is the divine presence of God that the author Bilquis enjoys, the peace and joy that surrounded her during those moments are inexplicable!  She was also highly sensitive when she grieved God and realized God’s presence leave her!  She makes crystal clear decisions in her life through the direct leading of God.  Amazing! Some theologically sound people may miss God but not someone who crazily holds on to His word and meditates it day and night! Hear me say it again day and night!  This book humbled and helped me learn to ‘hear the voice of God!’  

Friends, hearing God speak is a desire that has to be backed-up with some homework of regular Bible reading, meditation of scriptures and regular quiet time with the Lord coupled with fasting.  Let me be honest, without these spiritual exercises, it is difficult to discern His voice and hear God!  You don’t get to hear an audible booming voice from Heaven ( may be rarely for some) but there are myriad ways to hear Him: through a sermon, through scriptures, strong impression in the mind, quiet voice that you hear in the spirit and so on. Rev Billy Graham said: ‘I have never heard the voice of the Lord audibly, but the Lord has spoken to me many times throughout my life. To recognize the voice of the Lord, we must belong to Him.’  When the Lord commanded us to relocate our ministry to Hyderabad, please note my daughter was in inter-college and had to join a professional college and my son was in the junior school studying standard four – it was crucial time of the month of April for admissions.  Many of my daughter’s friends had already fixed the college and paid their fees whereas my daughter was not sure of where she would stay.  I was pressurized on all sides! God had spoken to me so I had to press forward!  How did I hear?  Let me candidly share my experience, repeatedly the name Hyderabad came to my mind strongly and further the Lord confirmed it with scriptures, only after it haunted me did I share it with my husband.  We did not pack our bags impulsively; we spent some more days in fasting and praying and finally before we left for the city, as a family -  ( my house maid joined us too) , we again fasted one whole day and then waited on the Lord.  I got an email with a subject ‘HYDERABAD’, the subject read as follows: ‘Please come to Hyderabad, we need you here.’  I do not know the sender personally but I knew it was God!  The only catalyst to hear God is through the Bible!  

My question is this, ‘what makes you think God would not reply?’ or ‘He would not reply within 24 hours?’ or ‘God does not understand our emergency?’  Most of us have come to believe that God is very, very busy to bother about our problems; on the contrary the Bible says that He cares about us and we got to carry our burdens to Him.  Are you listening?  Let this devotion change your mind set, get deeper with Him and believe Him to take decisions for you.  

The Lord said:

Jeremiah 33;3”Call to Me, and I will answer you, and show you great and mighty things, which you do not know.” What more assurance do we need?

I firmly believe,

•    whatever God has planned for me, be it: job, ministry, business deals, God would never allow someone else grab it away.  He would keep it for me!  Let me repeat, ‘He would keep it for me!’  “…no purpose of Yours can be withheld from You!” (Job 42:2)
•    When we put the ‘issue’ to rest and fast and pray about the matter, He is honored and hence He would surely speak to us and show us the clear way. His ways are not ambiguous!  
•    Nothing thrills God more than waiting patiently for Him!  If you don’t hear Him, don’t move!  I warn you don’t move until you get a clear Word from the Lord!

My advice is this, don’t hurry, keep it in prayer for a day or two (even if you have been praying about the matter for a long time) fast if it is crucial and then take a decision. Don’t hurry to say ‘yes’ or ‘no.’   While the leaders of the Antioch church were fasting and praying, they received, clear instructions from the Holy Spirit:

Acts 13:2”As they ministered to the Lord and fasted, the Holy Spirit said, "Now separate to Me Barnabas and Saul for the work to which I have called them." 3 Then, having fasted and prayed, and laid hands on them, they sent them away…..” We err in the area of ‘waiting and hearing’ from God because we fail to comprehend that He had not changed – He is the same unchanging God!

Why do I write this? There are none to appreciate or pat your back when your path is smooth and clear but there are thousands to stone you and lampoon you if ever you make a wrong turn! I talk from experience! Beware!

Isaiah 50:10" Who among you fears the LORD? Who obeys the voice of His Servant? Who walks in darkness And has no light? Let him trust in the name of the LORD And rely upon his God.”

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