We all start somewhere, and from that place, we grow. We will always get better at something with time and practice. So it is with our ability to recognize and respond to the voice of God.
Many people look at how I function in the prophetic and wonder if they will ever be able to do what I do. My first response is you have permission to learn, starting exactly where you are at right now. My second response is, I still have so much more to grow into too. I have fears of failure, of people, of looking like a fool – even now.
With this in mind, I thought I would share a few brief stories from the early days of me stopping for the one as I went about my day. Over the years, many people have said to me,
‘It’s fine for you. You have been doing this stepping out thing for well over 10 years.’
So, here is an early ‘stepping out’ story. This day of encounters happened in my first year of stopping for the one and were in response to the gentle nudges from God as I shopped with my 3-year-old-son.
I hope they encourage you to know it is all there for you on the other side of the veil, not two, 5 years or 10 years down the track, but now. The veil I refer to is the veil that clouds our view. We also know it as ‘fear’ and it can rip through us as we choose to respond to God’s voice. That doubt, worry, fear of people is just a veil, easily cast aside and stepped through.
Of course, there was another veil, or rather a huge heavy curtain, that was torn in two when someone else recognized and responded to the voice of God. As Jesus gave up His spirit for all humanity, that curtain ripped through, never to be joined again. It was the heavy, thick curtain in the Jewish Temple, separating the Holy Place, where only Priests could go, from the Most Holy Place, where God inhabited. With the final separation between God and humankind destroyed, we all became free to encounter God directly for ourselves. And as He inhabits us, so we become the Holy Temple of God, lifting our heads to gaze upon the face of Jesus. It is for this reason we can invite others to encounter Him, as He flows forth from us throughout our day:
Lift up your heads, you gates;
lift them up, you ancient doors,
that the King of glory may come in.
Sarah: I was at the store with my son buying a cheese slicer. Sarah was serving us. As we spoke, I felt inclined to say to her she had a lovely, gentle, kind spirit.
‘I don’t feel that way, and I’m sure my boys would not think so,’ she said.
With that comment, she explained she had yelled at them that very morning to hurry and get ready for school. She was feeling lousy for having done so.
‘Yelling at your children this morning does not change the fact that you have a gentle, kind spirit,’ I said in response.
I explained I was a Christian, and I believed God spoke to me about people. I said God had told me she had a gentle, kind spirit.
‘That is the nicest thing anyone has ever said to me,’ she said.
‘Would you like me to pray for you?’ I asked. ‘I believe you will feel God’s peace within you as I do.’
‘Yes,’ she replied. ‘Are you like those healers that lay hands on people? My girlfriend does that too!’
I wanted to correct her about the concept of ‘healers,’ but felt not to in the moment, so I prayed for her instead.
‘Oh, I felt something as you prayed. I feel so much better, thankyou.’
Girl 2: I went into another store where a girl had a good laugh at me because I asked for a product that I was standing right in front of. I felt a little embarrassed. Regardless, the long and short of it, God prompted me to go back after leaving the store. On returning, I encouraged her to maintain her great sense of humor. I felt God said to tell her that her humor was a rare commodity. There was no need for an explanation. There was no prayer. I was just asked to compliment, in line with His heart for her. The rest I was to leave up to Him.
Girl 3: I headed downstairs on the escalator and noticed a girl sitting at the centre’s concierge desk.
I felt God wanted me to stop for her and so I went up to the desk where she sat. After saying hello, I explained I was a Christian and that sometimes God points people out to me to stop for. I explained further that He will often let me know He wants me to tell them something.
With my explanation complete, I looked at her and said,
‘God loves you very much. You are extraordinarily special to Him.’
She teared up and motioned to me. She felt completely overwhelmed.
As she cried, I explained it must be true of her, since I rarely stopped to say such things to people.
‘He pointed you out to me,’ I continued, ‘and He wanted me to let you know.’
I offered to pray, but she shook her head.
‘I have to get on with my studies,’ she said.
Clearly overwhelmed, she briefly explained she had a new job starting the following day, and teary-eyed, she put her head down to get on with her work.
Girl 4: I went into a hair product store and where a girl covered in tattoos served me.
I again felt the need to say something to her.
‘What do you want me to say, God?’
I looked at her ink covered arms, and felt God let me know. With the little I had, I spoke.
‘You must have amazing patience.’
‘What do you mean?’ she asked.
‘You must have extraordinary patience to sit through all the time it would have taken to get all those tats. It must have taken a great deal of patience… and courage,’ I added.
She looked at me, a little baffled.
‘I’m a Christian. I believe God is telling me you are patient and courageous. In fact, he really digs you. He thinks your tats are great.’
To be honest, I wondered about this but went with it because I figured He loved her with or without the tattoos!
She suddenly became quite emotional.
‘I needed to hear that,’ she cried.
‘Yesterday was the anniversary of my sister’s death. It’s been over 20 years.’
I responded gently,
‘I hear you. My dad had died over 10 years ago. It still hurts. That’s tough. I’m so sorry.’
I offered to pray and she agreed.
I prayed quickly as she gazed straight into my eyes. In my prayer, I repeated what I had heard God say about her. It was a simple prayer. How deeply He loved her; how He thought she was great; and how he dug her tats. I simply prayed and agreed with Him, including that she was a girl of courage, patience, and I asked that He would give her peace. I then quietly thanked God that her sister was ok.
She looked like she was ready to cry some more, but she was also very conscious that she was at work. It was a quick interaction, and she, like Sarah and the others, affirmed that she felt the touch of God.
I left, in awe of a good, kind God. He sent me on an errand at the store, just when she needed to be loved, the day after a painful anniversary.
I think not!
Four simple interactions, responding to what I thought might be the voice of God. In the flow, I was learning to respond to His voice of kindness and love. The impact showed me He was at work, in and through me. He was loving the world, as He taught me to hear Him. He was loving the world, as He nudged me throughout the day.
You can do it too. Step out and dare to believe you were born for something greater! Step through the veil of fear. Ignore the fear of failure and the fear of getting it wrong. Most people are kind, even if you get it wrong. Said with love, you cannot really lose. Regardless of any fear of people, learn to respond to the gentle quiet nudges from our Pappa God.
If you do, I can guarantee you will learn what His voice sounds like for you, and the world will taste and see that…
God is Good!
© Beth Kennedy 2023