Some years ago, I recall listening to a minister tell his story how he was usually astounded when people said “God said….” or “God told me….” On a fateful day, he decided that God must speak to him too otherwise he wouldn’t leave so after his routine prayer, he waited and waited till he got weary and still hadn’t heard any whisper; he had to start pleading with God to speak. The moral he learnt that day was that God is king and is neither cajoled, forced, manipulated nor coerced to speak.
During my remedial studies just before entering the university, I would often hear people say “God told me …..” or “God said ….” I too like the minister was a bit puzzled as people received instructions on what they should study in the university and more. Is hearing God that easy? I would often ask back then. I hardly voiced out that question but always nursed it in my heart. Eventually I decided to narrow down and try to understand what it meant for one to hear God and what it took. In no distant time, I came across an amazing discovery which I will share in this piece.
While growing up, the God I learnt about was one that must be revered, honored, seldom talked to and never casually conversed with. As I grew, I came to an understanding that God is Lord and King, maker, giver and sustainer; He is a judge and a consuming fire, yet in all these, He is also a lover and a father, a friend and a helper. Over the years I have seen folks who took the later part of God’s person and essence and abused it. Both extreme perspectives are not only wrong but also detrimental to the growth of the believer.
In my pieces, “What Is Man (I)” and “What Is Man (II)“, I discussed the origin of man; man’s origin isn’t from Genesis where God said “Lets us create man in our image and after our likeness”, man’s origin rather is in Ephesians, where we were made to understand that man firstly existed in God in eternity past before God decided to precipitate man from inside him into a tangible being. I concluded that man has always been an intricate part of God. Please refer to the write-up. If this be so, that means that man should have it easy hearing and understanding what his origin and source is communicating to him. In my last piece “The Father, The So And The Holy Spirit”, I explained who and what the father is: the fountain and source of life, He that is all sufficient in himself, self sustaining and never depleting.
Heaven and earth were not designed to work independent of one another; the two were designed to work in harmony. Many are times the earth prays and desires an answer from heaven; there are such times too when heaven prays and desires response from earth. The later might seem unbelievable so I’ll give three instances.
1. Jesus On His Way To Golgotha
When Jesus was carrying his cross to Golgotha, he couldn’t have done that all alone because he was human, was in pain, had lost blood, was weak and famished and mind you, that wood was very heavy. If Jesus had died before reaching Golgotha where he was meant to be crucified, the redemptive work of the father through him would have not been completed and his coming into the earth would have been a total waste. The only death that Jesus was meant to die was on the cross; recall that Moses lifted the serpent in the wilderness and in the book of John we were told that so must the son of man be lifted up the same way. Moses walked in the messianic spirit and some things he did were a shadow of what was to come. At that point in time, heaven prayed and the earth answered, a man called Simon from Cyrene came to Jesus’ aid and redemption was possible.
2. The Cry In Heaven
In the book of Revelation chapter 5, when John saw the scroll that had seven seals, the bible said a cry was made, who is worthy to unlock the seals and open the scroll thereof, the cry made reached hell, earth and heaven but none was found except the lamb of God who had prevailed and was worthy.
3. The Word Of God
Moreover, the bible tells us that God searches for a man to use at all times. Ezekiel 22: 30, God said he searches for a man that will stand in the gap but found none.
Many times, God depends on men to carry out his purpose and agenda on earth, this does not in any way try to portray God as incapacitated, rather limited in some sense because he chose to partner with man and not because he doesn’t sustain the power and authority. God is a God of order and is just to himself and as many that have a stake in whatever He is up to.
These three instances are proof that heaven and earth are partners; moreover the purpose of man’s creation is so that he can be a god on the earth, to have dominion and establish the rule and government of God (who is in heaven) upon the earth, to replicate what is in heaven on the earth. Gen 1: 26, Psalm 82 and the Lord’s prayer are proof of that.
For this earth to hear the prayers of heaven and for the dominion mandate to be fulfilled, there is need for the subject on earth to hear clearly and understand what the Subject in heaven is saying. One reason why many prayers aren’t answered is because they are birthed from the hearts of unregenerate men and minds that are not renewed and are in outright rebellion against the will of the king. One may marvel, Is it easy to hear and understand God? Yes it is but firstly one must come to terms with certain truths.
1. God Primarily Created Man For Fellowship: Man was not created to be a sovereign and absolute subject but a partner and that is why the voice of the Lord will always come to man in the cool of day and have fellowship. Man was originally designed to function as he looks up to another (his source), whenever man functions without looking up first chaos is sure to be the order of the day. With this I can boldly conclude that God desires to talk with you more than you want to hear him talk. The fall of man might have seemed to tamper with that but the death, burial, resurrection and ascension of Jesus made it possible for us to be alive and vitally connected to God once again. His sacrifice on the cross made it possible for the Holy Spirit to live in us, through whom we make contact with God.
2. Spiritual Things Cannot Be Discerned By The Flesh: For the language and code of God to be understood, one has to be on the same level with God. Bible makes it clear to us that God is spirit and they who worship him must do so in spirit and in truth. When man fell, he became dead to the signals and leadings of the spirit of God and more alive to his flesh and carnal things. Mind you, carnal things aren’t bad in themselves, but an overemphasis or allotting of great priority to them is what is wrong. This state of spiritual death makes it almost impossible for man to hear and understand God. Man is not a spirit that has a soul and lives in a body, man is simply Spirit, Soul And Body. If God did not want to keep touch with man, he would not have made man spirit, soul and body. If God is spirit and must be worshipped in spirit and truth, then it was only reasonable for Him to have created man as a spirit too. The reason why man make up constitutes spirit for easy in the flow of information (communication)
3. Man Is A god On Earth: Psalm 82 tells us that man is a god on earth when man was created, he was in God’s image and after God’s likeness. A goat cannot give birth to a lion neither can a dog give birth to a sheep. In what we call the Lord’s prayer, it says “…thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven…” this is as clear as A, B and C. There is a will that must be done on the earth, not more or less of how it is done in heaven. I pause to ask a question, how would you carry out a project if you don’t understand the mind of the project manager? If God desires His will be done on earth, it means He’s willing to give the blueprint and plan for the construction. This is possible via communication.
4. All For Love: For as many of us that have been in love before or have a families, we will all admit that we love to spend quality time with the ones we love and our families. We love to talk and share ideas and information, talk about our feelings and more.
Love is not an attribute our God possesses, He is love personified, everything He is and does is an expression of His love. Nothing delights His heart more than seeing us listen to him and respond commensurately
Sometimes, God delights in hiding himself so we would seek him (he says, ask seek and knock …he later said for anyone that asks receives; observe he said ‘asks’ not ‘asked’ – connoting present continuous).
God is a need and also a want. While I was much younger, I arrived at the believe that God is a need in my life, His dealings might not be pleasurable but are needful for a better tomorrow which I had little idea of. As time went on, my reflection brought something up to bare, I arrived again at the conclusion that God is also a want. He is a want because out of my own volition I must reach out for him. Our needs could sometimes be unpleasant and therefore imposed upon us by those who love us; our wants however aren’t the same, we choose what we want and discard what we don’t. God is therefore a need and a want because He is indispensable and also someone I’m intentional about knowing and having an intimate walk with him.
This piece will continue in my next publication.