I have a very good friend who served the Lord as a missionary educator and director of a college in Durban, South Africa for many years. Ron is a unique individual with a degree in physics. His insights are often astounding as he applies his scientific knowledge to biblical principles. His eccentricity is sometimes manifested in his daily life. For example, he recorded this message on his telephone answering machine, “Thank you for calling. Please leave your name, number and the month you called.” In other words, “Don’t expect me to call you back any time soon.”
In contrast, I use one of my favorite passages of scripture on my answering machine. It’s found in Lamentations 3:22-23. “The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases. His mercies never come to an end. They are new every morning. (That’s right!) They are new EVERY MORNING. Great is His faithfulness.”
His Steadfast love never ceases. He never stops loving you. His love is not dependent on your performance. No matter how much you have messed up or how good you are His love remains steadfast. You can’t make Him stop loving you!
His love brings healing to us. When I first discovered the Secret Place out of desperation for His presence, I was overwhelmed by His love for me. Every day, for my entire first month in the secret place, he told me how much He loved me. He was healing me with His love.
His Mercies never come to an end. Mercy is giving something to someone that they don't deserve. You can’t exhaust His mercy. No matter how much you need, there is always more available. “Let us ... remember Peter: three times he denied Jesus, precisely when he should have been closest to him; and when he hits bottom he meets the gaze of Jesus who patiently, wordlessly, says to him: "Peter, don't be afraid of your weakness, trust in Me." Peter understands, he feels the loving gaze of Jesus and he weeps. How beautiful is this gaze of Jesus — how much tenderness is there! Brothers and sisters, let us never lose trust in the patience and mercy of God! God's mercy can make even the driest land become a garden, can restore life to dry bones (cf. Ez 37:1-14). ... Let us be renewed by God's mercy, let us be loved by Jesus, let us enable the power of his love to transform our lives too; and let us become agents of this mercy, channels through which God can water the earth, protect all creation and make justice and peace flourish.” Pope Francis
The most wonderful, incredible, amazing fact is that God’s love and mercy ARE NEW EVERY MORNING. Every day is a new beginning, with fresh resources from God! All you have to do is receive them. Yesterday’s wisdom, advice and counsel will not be enough for today. Daily manna is what you and I need.
A fresh word from God is waiting for you today and every day in your future. It is in His heart and upon His lips and it’s perfectly designed and tailored for your life by the Master and giver of life itself. He is waiting for you in The Secret Place. God doesn’t have an answering machine. He speaks directly with you all the time.
Run into His presence in the morning. Wait in His presence. Listen to what he has to say. Talk to your Lord and Savior and Friend. He loves you. EVERY DAY IS A NEW BEGINNING. He is waiting…
Dreams are a very significant way in which God speaks to us. A dream is a vision while you are sleeping. You actually watch your dreams as your eyes rapidly follow the action that is occurring in your night vision. Psychologists call this REM (Rapid Eye Movement). You are seeing what He is saying.
It is very important to place a high value upon your dreams and interpret them from a biblical perspective. While there is no set formula for dream interpretation, there are some guidelines I have discovered which can assist you in discerning the Lord’s voice in your dreams:
1. Remember Your Dreams! Respect the significance of your dreams and take time to write them down in your journal. Be sure to date the dream and identify where you were when the dream occurred. Use as much detail as possible as you describe the dream no matter how insignificant it may seem. Record colors, emotions, words, feelings, observations, objects, animals, vehicles, places, people, etc.
2. Don’t devalue your dreams! Make a quality decision that you want and need help and direction from God for your life. Believe that dreams contain a valid message. Don’t dismiss a dream because it is short.
“The dream is an invaluable counselor. We cannot pay for a better one. It is with us every night, charges no fee, and makes no demands except that we listen to it and learn to detect God’s voice in symbolic language. The dream seeks to cooperate with His great purpose: to help us realize every part of our potential and to bring us into harmony with God, the world around us and ourselves. There is no better way to get to the heart of our problems than through our dreams.” - Herman Riffel
3. Always apply the dream to yourself first! Some experts say that 95% of dreams are subjective, (they have something to say to the dreamer about themselves.) The other 5% are objective and refer to the people closely related to us and with whom we are emotionally involved. (Continued in Part Seven)
My personal journal is filled with drawings and descriptions of pictures and visions that flash into my mind as I wait in God’s presence and He speaks to me. These revelations are sometimes so profound that they have changed my life. I quickly discovered that it was the voice of God. The Bible refers to this as Rhema. Rhema is God’s Spirit speaking directly to your spirit. It comes as a spontaneous thought, idea, word, feeling or vision. Thoughts from your mind are meditated. Thoughts emanating from your heart are spontaneous. Look to see what he will say to you!
The third key is faith and expectation. We are to watch and see what He will say. Notice it says ‘what’ He will say, not ‘if’’ He will speak. Jesus is waiting for us in the Secret Place. He says, “But you, when you pray, go into your room and when you have shut your door, pray to your Father who is in the secret place and your Father who sees in secret will reward you openly.” (Matthew 6:6) Expect His presence. Believe He is waiting for you! Expect Him to speak.
The fourth key is that we are to ‘record the vision’. We are instructed to keep a journal. It is essential to write down what God is showing us. Many times as I wait in God’s presence a picture will spontaneously appear in my mind. Once I have written that vision I will enter into a dialogue with the Lord. My first question is, “Lord, what does this mean?” Without exception, He always expands the vision and explains its significance. My journal reads like a novel with pages of dialogue between the Lord and me and artistic drawings to illustrate the visions I have seen.
One of the most frequent comments I receive from Christians in regard to intimacy with the Lord is, “God is not speaking to me. I am not hearing anything. I am so frustrated.”
The scripture provides us with some clear answers regarding this dilemma. The prophet Habakkuk reveals several principles that are vital to communion with God and hearing His voice.
Habakkuk writes, “I will stand my watch and set myself upon the rampart, and watch to see what He will say to me and what I will answer when I am corrected.” Then the Lord answered, “Write the vision and make it plain on tablets, that he may run who reads it. For the vision is yet for an appointed time; but at the end it will speak, and it will not lie. Though it tarries, wait for it because it will surely come. It will not tarry.” - Habakkuk 2:1-3
There are four principles to communion with God in this passage. First, we must stand at the guard post. Simply stated, we need to position ourselves to be watchmen by seeking solitude. Then, we need to become still and silent in this secret place and wait for the Lord.
Second, we are to watch to see what He will say. This single key is vital to hearing God’s voice. God speaks in pictures almost all of the time. If we are waiting to hear an audible voice we may never hear it. Instead, once we have asked God to speak pictures will flash into our spirit and are projected onto the screen of our mind so spontaneously and uninitiated by our human effort that we wonder where they came from. We need to recognize that we are actually seeing what God is speaking to us!
God often speaks to us through dreams and visions. Dream and vision are the language of the prophets. Prophets are seers who see what God speaks! It is no surprise that Paul desired everyone to prophecy. He encouraged us to seek this gift. My definition of prophecy is, ‘the ability to hear God’s voice’. When a prophet says, “Thus saith the Lord…” he is often recounting what he has seen! That is why many prophets were actually called Seers.
Why keep a journal? The most important reason is that the Lord encourages it. Perhaps it is because we simply forget things. It is difficult to remember yesterday, let alone last week or ten years ago.
Another important reason is that it provides us with a roadmap of where we have been and how we arrived where we are. When we go back in our journal and read the chronological events we discover more clearly that He really is our good Shepherd. He leads us daily. He has graciously led us along life’s pathway. Our journal serves as a reminder of the revelation and insights that God has given us.
There is a time element in God’s plan for our lives. I have often taught that there are three components to seeing and experiencing the release of God’s will in our life. The first is being in the right PLACE. The second is being there at the right TIME. The third is being there with the right PEOPLE. Your Journal will confirm these principles.
Last but not least, your journal leaves a legacy for generations to come. Your own descendents and perhaps the world may someday open the pages of your journal and discover the reality of God’s presence and guidance in your life. They will be encouraged themselves to follow in your footsteps.
Dr. Dale Fife has served the Body of Christ for over 50 years as a caring pastor, insightful teacher, gifted musician, and best-selling author. His wisdom, maturity, and genuine spiritual concern for others have caused many to regard him as a "spiritual father" in the Lord. His insightful teaching has inspired and blessed thousands around the world.