For weeks, I thought God was giving me signs. Hints of something to come.
What I didn’t realize at the time is God doesn’t speak to us in puzzles.
I faced a health scare, and twenty-one days stood between the initial phone call and a diagnosis. So I prayed and kept my eyes open. An hour after the receptionist at the breast imaging office called, I realized an online cancer summit was starting the exact same day as my upcoming diagnostic exam. Then, I remembered October was breast cancer awareness month.
When I asked a few friends to pray for me, on more than one occasion they asked God for healing. Wait a minute, was I sick? Was God trying to tell me what was coming?
Uncertain about what lay ahead, I walked the dog and prayed for a healthy body. I prayed when they did further screening, they’d find nothing there. But what if?
My diagnostic exam finally came, and I listened to worship music on the way to the office. Every song seemed to talk about not fearing the future and state how God is always with us. I sang along with the radio, making the words my personal victory chant.
After the technician took more pictures from new angles, I sat in the waiting room with the robe draped around my body. I tried to numb my brain with mindless scrolling on Instagram, but couldn’t get a good signal on my phone. Then, I noticed a Gideon Bible sitting on the end table across the room.
As I picked it up and carried it to my chair, I noticed a defect with the cutting. Several pages toward the middle of the Bible were longer around the bottom edge, creating a sort of natural bookmark. I flipped open to the first “bookmarked” page and read. As the words spoke straight to my spirit, I realized this was the voice of God.
“The Lord is my light and my salvation; whom shall I fear? The Lord is the strength of my life; of whom shall I be afraid?” Psalm 27:1 KJV
All this time leading up to my appointment, a fear lurked during moments I allowed myself to overthink. I looked for hidden clues and thought perhaps God was trying to prepare me for unwelcome news.
But in this moment with the words of David lying on my lap, I saw the truth. God doesn’t speak to us in puzzles or give us breadcrumbs to follow when he’s speaking to us. His words are not a puzzle to be solved, but a balm to the weary soul.
When God speaks, his voice is steady and consistent, not confusing and fear-inducing.
Although Jesus spoke to the Jews in parables they didn’t understand, this was because he already knew their hearts. He knew they didn’t believe, and they had already chosen their path. But when he speaks to us as children, it isn’t in parables. It’s in a loving voice that says, “Don’t be afraid. No matter what the future holds, I’m with you.”
Seconds after I read those words from Psalm 27, the technician came in with the radiologist’s reading. Further screening showed I didn’t have cancer. I wouldn’t need to return for another year. But you know what? Even if the reading had shown the opposite, I know those fear-inducing moments weren’t the voice of God.
Why? Because over three hundred times in scripture, God tells us, “Don’t be afraid.” He tells us he goes with us, and he prepares a path for us.
If you feel like you’re chasing breadcrumbs today, trying to hear the voice of God, know this: He still speaks. Sit down, quiet your mind, and put your phone on “do not disturb.” Open your Bible and see what happens.
He wants to communicate with each of us. Sometimes we just have to slow down our racing hearts enough to listen.
If you need further encouragement that God is for you, even in the midst of the struggle, uncertainty, and unknown future, I encourage you to pick of a copy of my book, Shift: Changing Our Focus to See the Presence of God. Many people have sent me messages saying it is a timely book for this season, which encourages my heart so much. I pray that God continues to use it to touch lives.
You can purchase a copy of Shift by clicking the image below.