We are able to know God because He graciously reveals himself to us. God’s revealing can occur in many different ways:
through Christian community
through visions and dreams
through the circumstances in our lives.
As Beth Felker Jones reminds us in Practicing Christian Doctrine,
“When God reveals divine reality to us, real transformation takes place. When we truly know the things of God, we will be changed- both body, soul, and spirit. The deepest truth of our reality, what Scripture sometimes speaks of as the heart, will be transformed. The transformation worked in divine revelation is eternal (1).”
(Practicing Christian Doctrine, P.32)
What is God revealing to you?
If you are not sure, there could be a reason. It might have to do with how well you are listening. Listening and perceiving God’s voice takes effort on our part. We don’t want to miss the transforming truth that God has for us, so the habits we acquire matter. Here are some ideas or, as some might call them, spiritual disciplines that can help:
find quiet time to pray and listen. Some call this Listening Prayer.
seek truth and revelation from God’s Holy Scriptures. Doing this in community helps so that we can get clarity on things we do not understand.
observe the patterns of your life and make notes. This is simply known as self-reflection and helps to see your circumstances in light of what you know of God and his love for you.
talk to a Christian friend whom you trust. Once again, Christian community is important for encouragement- and redirection. We can receive God’s perspective from other Christians too.
For more ideas for spiritual disciplines that help us to know God, I highly recommend Soul Tending, Life Forming Practices for Older Youth and Young Adults by Anne Broyles, et al. (2)
“The secret things belong to the LORD our God,
but the things that are revealed belong to us
and to our children forever,
that we may do all the words of this law.”
Jones, Beth F. 2014.Practicing Christian Doctrine. Grand Rapids, MI: Baker Academics.
Broyles, A, Burton, B, Carter, K, Cousart, R, Dyson, D, Meaker, D, Mittman, B, Oliver K, ...Youngman, J. 2002. Nashville, TN: Abingdon Press.
Photo Credits: Lisa Lee