Often people will relate prayer with talking to God, and meditation with listening to God.
After our prayer time when we may voice a situation that we need help with, or we have asked direction, it is time to listen.
In order to listen, the mind needs to be quiet. Even if only for a few minutes. We need to practice meditation until we can get into a receptive state. Just sitting and listening. Just being there.
But then, let’s say that your mind does get quiet for a while. How can you tell if your answer is coming from God?
The first thing to notice for me is that the answer is not anything I would normally say or think. It actually feels as if the answer or the new idea came from somewhere else.
Also, answers are not typically to, “Sell all your possessions and go spend all the money on lottery tickets.”
I often find that the answers that come to me do not completely solve a situation or make it go away, but they lead me towards the solution. Perhaps a new idea to ponder, or a new perspective on a situation.
We must always remember that this is a process. God does not always just ZAP us and everything is solved. But more often than not, we are led in the right direction.
If you do get, “zapped” with a bright idea, let me suggest that you check with your spiritual advisor, minister, or close friends, before following through. Just to be on the safe side.
Though it is nice to get some insight and some direction, this can often be frustrating. Most of us would prefer a quick solution. Most of us would prefer to be, “zapped.”
I want what I want, and I want it NOW! I want to see the outcome. I want to know that if I do something, it will get me what I want in return. I am looking for a guarantee.
My good friend the Reverend Dale Worley reminded us recently of the Martin Luther King Jr. quote: “Faith is taking the first step, even when you don’t see the whole staircase.”
The first step. We can always see the first step. And if we cannot see what we need to do, we always know what not to do. Yes?
So there’s your answer.