Give Me A Sign
It’s maybe the phrase I’ve heard the most in my career. New Christians and the spiritually mature alike share a longing to hear God answer their questions directly. To speak with Him like Adam and Eve spoke with Him in the Garden of Eden. And sometimes, people feel like God has actually answered them! Provided a sign in their life that gives them the direction and the answers they’ve been longing for. But how do we know if this is truly God’s Word or simply our heart’s desire? Here are my 3 Biblical truths to bear in mind when looking for “signs from God”.
1. Know How God Speaks To Us
God does have specific ways He speaks to us. It’s important we don’t put words in His mouth just because we desire a certain answer. Let’s look together at a few different verses that describe how God speaks to His people:
- “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.” – John 1:1
- “All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness.” – 2 Timothy 3:16
- “Long ago, at many times in many ways, God spoke to our fathers by the prophets, but in these last days He has spoken to us by His Son, whom He appointed the heir of all things, through whom also He created the world.” – Hebrews 1:1-2
What’s the big theme running throughout these verses? (Say it with me now) THE WORD! God promises to speak through His Word. Not through horoscopes, not through signs, not through catchy Facebook or Instagram posts. If you’re looking for God to speak to you, look to where He promises to do so. Yes, it’s hard work studying Scripture. That’s why God gives you pastors, DCEs, and teachers who can help you learn to properly interpret the Bible. But the hard work pays off when we realize that God is constantly speaking to us, not through cryptic puzzles and signs, but through His Living Word.
2. Know How Discernment Works
Discernment is the spiritual gift of being able to interpret how God’s Word speaks to a specific situation. Let’s take a look at a few Bible verses that discuss this gift:
- “For the Word of God is living and active, sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing to the division of soul and of spirit, of joints and of marrow, and discerning the thoughts and intentions of the heart.” – Hebrews 4:12
- “Beloved, do not believe everything, but test every thought to see if it is from God, for many false prophets have gone out into the world.” – 1 John 4:1
- “Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God.” – Romans 12:2
After we turn to God’s Word, we have to think about what it is saying in regards to our specific situations in life. This is tricky. Reading Scripture in context is a skill that is only developed by actively surrounding yourself with other Bible believing Christians. Bible study is not just an opportunity for your pastors/DCEs to ramble on (although I admit we are prone to that), it’s a time to hone your discernment skills through the power of the Spirit. Stay active in Bible Study, my friends. You’ll find that God has never stopped speaking to you.
3. Know How Our Choices Work
We do not have a God who simply wanted to create puppets He could maneuver on a marionette string. We do not have a God who only works with us if we make the “right choices” and follow the “right path”. We have a God who actively allows us to make decision about our earthly lives and chooses to work through those decisions. Of course, as sinful humans, we are often tempted to choose selfishly. That’s why tip 1 and 2 are so important. Scripture gives us a solid ethical foundation to base our life choices on. However, we can be confidant that whether we are making the right or wrong choices God is working for us and through us. Have faith, dear friends, you don’t need a sign. You already have Jesus.
For I know the plans I have for you,’ declares the Lord, ‘plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.– Jeremiah 29:11
Director of Christian Education