How does God answer your prayers? How does He speak to you?
I told my husband yesterday morning that I was going to the farm to walk because I needed a word from God for my blog. I laced up my shoes, grabbed my jacket, put my white little earbuds in place, and prayed for God to show me something new. It didn’t take long for me to realize that the song playing in my ears was one that had been on my heart for a few weeks. It meshed perfectly with my new word for the year, Authentic.
Then there was the verse I’d been led to that morning that I had completely overlooked in the past. I couldn’t stop processing the song and that verse – not that I wanted to. God knows how I love mental gymnastics, so He set the bar high. I can see Him now, grinning from ear to ear saying to Himself, “She’s gonna love figuring out how these two go together.”
The song was Michah Tyler’s Different, and the verse that I know hadn’t been in my Bible before (not really) was 2 Thessalonians 1:9. “They [unbelievers] will pay the penalty of eternal destruction from the Lord’s presence and from his glorious strength” (CSB, emphasis mine)
Okay, I know that may not be the most uplifting verse you’ve ever heard, but hear me out.
When Jesus returns He will take to eternal LIFE the ones who believed in and followed Him. It will be inexpressibly magnificent – forever! But those who don’t believe will be destroyed, and never have the opportunity to live in the presence of God – ever!
While you and I can’t think of anything worse than to die and miss feasting at the table with God, Jesus, and the Spirit, those who don’t really know Him have no idea what they’ll be missing. Perhaps that’s why they don’t seem to care whether they know Him or not. That’s where Micah Tyler’s song comes in. Read the words to the chorus:
I wanna be different
I wanna be changed
‘Til all of me is gone
And all that remains
Is a fire so bright
The whole world can see
That there’s something different
So come and be different
How can those without freedom in Christ ever develop a longing for the presence of God if we forget to revel in it? How can they understand the absolute miracle of having the King of the World for a friend if they fail to see the results of such an intimate friendship? I know you want to be different. I know you want to be authentic. You want the whole world to see a difference in you. Am I right? Maybe you have a fire inside, but it’s just glowing instead of roaring. Gather some other glowing coals you know, stand next to each other, and ask the Spirit to start a blaze. Feel the warmth of His presence, and others will move closer to warm their hands. Who knows? Some hearts might even begin to thaw.
I’ve had to do some major closet cleaning in my heart in order to make room for things that have an Eternal Significance. I still have much more to do, and I trust God will help me with the specifics, but I’ve decided it’s time to take my eyes off me and look around for those who need a glimpse of joy. It’s not just the lost who need to see some Spirit-filled joy; it just might be the people who share your home.
Maybe God led you to this crazy intersection of song and Scripture today and it spoke to you. Maybe you just think I’m crazy. I can live with that. Whether you felt led here, or you just stopped by out of habit, please take the time to reflect on this song and listen carefully. You might hear God speaking to your heart. He likes to talk when He knows people are listening.