Whenever I face uncertainty, it happens. I look for clues of what God is trying to tell me. As if God is tossing me breadcrumbs, leading me down the path to some obscure puzzle.
Maybe it’s because anxiety makes it hard for me to focus. Or perhaps it’s just human nature. In my longing for certainty, this search for clues gives the illusion of control.
But the more I walk with Jesus and learn to recognize his voice, the more I realize he’s not the type of God who throws us breadcrumbs. Instead, he gives us himself. And not just a piece or a crumb. He gives us his whole self. He meets us in the most personal ways and in the most unexpected circumstances.
Over the past nine years, God brought Psalm 27 into my life in very distinct, intentional ways.
This is a popular psalm of David so it would be easy to dismiss it as a coincidence, but each of these occurrences has been specific and timed in a way that could only be orchestrated by God. Women I didn’t know and others who had no clue what I was going through gave me verses from this psalm to meditate upon. Sometimes the verses were printed out on cards, and other times they were spoken over me.
The first time this psalm came into my life in a specific way, I was at my first writer’s conference. This particular year, there were over eight hundred attendees, all at different stages in their journeys. The staff prayed for days, asking God to direct them toward verses from the Bible to pick and assign to each person who came. Even without knowing these attendees, they knew God would lead.
When I arrived at my seat the first evening at the conference, I picked up the card containing my verse. It read:
“For in the day of trouble
he will keep me safe in his dwelling;
he will hide me in the shelter of his sacred tent
and set me high upon a rock.
Then my head will be exalted
above the enemies who surround me;
at his sacred tent I will sacrifice with shouts of joy;
I will sing and make music to the Lord.”
God knew the doubt and apprehension I carried with me into this conference. He knew I didn’t feel qualified to be there or to pursue a dream that felt too big and too risky. In the following months when I faced rejection and a sense of pointlessness, I clung to these verses and made the vow to continue to “make music for the Lord.”
Years after this conference, I sat in a breast imaging waiting room. I had received a dreaded call back on an irregular screening, and my mind was reeling with possibilities. I tried to numb my mind with aimless scrolling on my phone, but my signal was terrible. When I looked across the room, I saw a Gideon Bible sitting on a side table.
There was a defective page cut in a way that caused it to protrude further than the rest of the pages. It created a sort of natural bookmark, and so I opened the Bible to this page. When I did, these words from Psalm 27 greeted me:
“The Lord is my light and my salvation—
whom shall I fear?
The Lord is the stronghold of my life—
of whom shall I be afraid?”
Psalm 27:1 NIV
I knew in that moment that regardless of my diagnosis, God saw me. He knew every fear I faced, and he cared enough to send the exact words I needed while I waited.
The third time I remember God bringing this psalm into my life was a few months ago. I was coming out of a very difficult season of my life and questioning my next steps. Although I thought God was leading me in a specific direction, numerous hurdles caused me to doubt.
On a whim, I decided to take a prophetic art class. This was way outside my comfort zone, but the instructor was a part of our church family, and I trusted her. The class focused on painting combined with prayer as means of overcoming strongholds in our spiritual lives. The teacher spent the first few classes addressing a key area most of the students struggled with: control. Then, after much prayer, she gave each participant a passage of scripture to learn and meditate upon throughout the course. Mine? Psalm 27. Not only did this psalm give me the confidence I needed to move forward with God’s direction, but it further solidified his voice and his presence in my situation.
Friend, I don’t know where you’re seeking God’s voice today. You may be stuck in a holding cycle of hesitation, waiting to act on a word you believe was from him. Can I tell you something I hope will encourage you? God doesn’t speak to us in puzzles.
When God speaks to us, it is direct, not ambiguous.
He is not a God of confusion, but a God who speaks to us in a very specific, unambiguous way. His voice may not remove the uncertainty we face, but it will give us peace in the midst of it.
His Word is the certainty we can cling to as we face the unknown.
If we want to see God in the midst of our struggles, we have to change the way we look for him. My book, Shift: Changing Our Focus to See the Presence of God, is filled with practical tools and insights to help you do so.
Here’s what one reader said after reading it:
“This book changed my life! It changed my perspective on God and God’s will for my life. I would recommend this book to anyone looking to understand God and His plans.” -Christi
You can pick up a copy of Shift by clicking the image below.
*This post contains affiliate links. You can read my affiliate link disclosure here.