Sunday, September 2, 2018

Final Words: A 14-Day Journey to Hearing from God

Hey, Y'all!

On our last day together on the journey, last Sunday, I said I would have some final words for you all that following day. I knew I needed to say a few things to kinda wrap things up, but I just didn't have the words together like I thought I would, and honestly, I still don't think I do. But I'm here now, so I'm going to speak as He leads me.

The journey was SO good for me. It was refreshing, and at the same time, pretty challenging. It challenged my discipline. It challenged my heart. It challenged my commitment to the Lord, and it pushed me completely out of my comfort zone. And I pray it challenged you in the same way because even though the journey pushed me past my comfort, I'm much better after having had the push. SO much better!


When God told me to do the 14-day journey, He burdened my heart for what burdens His. When He showed me that there are people out there who want to hear from Him but don't think they can, my heart broke. When He showed me that there are people out there who don't hear from Him as clearly as they once did, my heart broke some more. I don't ever want anyone to not be able to talk to and hear from the Lord because He WANTS to talk to us, and He's ALWAYS talking! Anyone who is in Christ and wants to hear from God, can and should, whenever they desire to.

Throughout the 14-Day Journey to Hearing from God, we covered a lot. We know that hearing from God by way of the Holy Spirit is one of the benefits of being in relationship with Him through Jesus Christ. We looked at all the ways God can speak to us, and we took time to train our ears to hear from Him. I know, without a doubt, that if you were consistent each day with the reading and the assignments, you were not the same person at Day 14 that you were at Day 1. I just know that. I know the Lord designed the assignments with you in mind, so if you were diligent and really sought after the Him (Hebrews 11:6), I know He rewarded you and met you right at the desire of your heart. It's just who He is. 

I want to close with a few messages I received from people who took the journey with us. These messages were sweet reminders to me that I was on the right track in hearing God for His people. If I had heard from no one at all, I was still sure of what God told me to do, but these messages were icing on the cake.





I have prayed for you. I will continue to pray for you. Don't let the journey end here. Prayerfully, you've learned how to initiate conversation with the God who created you and WANTS to hear your voice. I pray you've learned how to quiet yourself to hear from Him too. 

I will be discarding the Remind App after today, but should you have any final words, questions or thoughts, you can comment on this blog, or you can always e-mail me at ianthasinsight@gmail.com.

I love y'all and pray you know how much more He loves you.

-Iantha




Sunday, August 26, 2018

Day 14: A 14-Day Journey to Hearing from God


It's our last day together, so I wanted to close out the journey talking about the very last item on our list of ways we hear from God.

How Do We Hear from God ?
  1. spoken word from preachers and teachers of the Word / church
  2. reading and studying God's Word
  3. talking to God and quieting ourselves to let Him talk to us (prayer)
  4. convictions (the tugging at our hearts, the push and pull in our spirits)
  5. fellowship with other believers
  6. warning and foresight, spoken directly to our spirits 
Essentially, in many cases, warning and foresight end up going hand in hand, and to be clear, before we move on, let's define warning and foresight. Dictionary.com defines the two this way:

warning - something that serves to give notice or caution
foresight - knowledge or insight gained by or as by looking forward; a view of the future

Keeping those definitions in mind, let's open up this installment with a story from the Bible. Read Genesis 40.

You don't have to write the answers to the following questions in your journal, but before we move on, think through each of the questions to make sure you understand what we just read. 
  1. Who had the dream?
  2. Who interpreted the dream?
  3. Was the dream a warning? A foretelling? Both?
  4. What, specifically, did Joseph say in verse 8 about interpretations of dreams?
God gave warnings and foresight through dreams in Bible days, and He's still doing it today. I know because I'm a dreamer, and God has been VERY clear with me in most of the interpretations of those dreams. Sometimes I know the moment I wake up what He's saying to me, and other times, it takes time for it to be revealed. One thing is for sure though: When He gives me the dream and I earnestly pray and seek Him for its meaning, He reveals.



Just as Joseph said in the text, all interpretation is from God. When God sends a dream, He's the interpreter. He's the giver of the dream, so He'll be the giver of its meaning. There are stories upon stories in the Bible of God speaking to His people through dreams, and there are stories upon stories of people today who are hearing from the Lord through dreams. And this, in my eyes, is one of the coolest ways God speaks to our hearts. He has our full attention when we're asleep because we're not engaged in the hustle and bustle of our days. And sometimes, because we are so busy with the hustle and bustle, God has to speak to us this way because He is determined to have us hear what He wants to say to our hearts. (If that's not love, I don't know what is!)

I learned a lot (and am learning a lot) about dreams and the way God gives warning and foresight through dreams from Dr. Joe Ibojie. If you're a dreamer and your dreams tell stories in a sense, meaning you can recall the events rather clearly, no matter how weird those events are or how fragmented they may be, 9 times out a 10, those dreams came from the Lord. (I've been in a flying bus before that landed on water and everyone who was on the bus had to swim out into the water that was a wall leading up to the sky kind of like an aquarium, but with no walls. CRAZY! But the Lord was speaking a VERY CLEAR message.)

Dr. Ibojie helped me understand the symbolism that God uses when He speaks through dreams because God still speaks in parables and illustrations like He did through Jesus in Bible days. When I take the dreams to the Lord with a clearer understanding of how He speaks through the symbols and illustrations, I can pray a little more boldly and thoughtfully for Him to show me what He's saying.

God can send a warning or give foresight directly to your spirit too. It doesn't have to come through a dream. When we are in constant communication with the Lord through prayer and the reading and studying of His word, He speaks to us in the quiet of our spirits.

I was in college and I had been saved maybe a year. I was in God's face for hours at a time every day because I was hungry to learn of Him. I remember one day having to leave my quiet time with the Lord to go and have my car serviced. If I didn't get up and go soon, I would miss the window of time for them to take my car that day. If I missed that window of time, I would have to wait until the next day, but the next day I would be leaving town, so I had to get up. On my way to the Wal-Mart Auto Department, I remember getting words in my thoughts to tell a man if he asked me if I was dating anyone. It was the weirdest thing because it literally came out of nowhere. I had a rundown of what to say if I was asked and what to say if his response to my answer was "this", or if his response to my answer was "that". I didn't think anything of it. I just kept it in my "back pocket". 

While my car was being serviced, I walked the Wal-Mart aisles to pick up a few things, and while on one aisle, I was approached by a guy. He made small talk about what I had picked up from one of the shelves, and in almost the same breath, he asked me if I was dating anyone. I was cool, calm and collected on the outside, but on the inside I was about to die of shock! This was one of the first times I had received foresight from the Lord spoken directly to my spirit! He had literally prepared me, minutes prior, for that encounter. He had told me what would be asked of me and He told me how to respond. Y'all, it literally blew my mind!

I had another instance not long after that one when the Lord told me I would be getting a check in the mail. I didn't know who it would be from or that it would be for $1,000 to go toward the tuition for my post-graduate intern studies, but everything in me knew when I was walking to that mailbox that there was a check in there for me. I wasn't even expecting anyone to send me anything because I was already done with gathering all of my funds for the internship and had already determined with my parents what we would have left to pay since all of the contributions had already come in. I was so sure that there was a check in the mail that day that I was already in tears by the time I made it to the mailbox. He had made me so sure of it and told me to expect it. I was more in awe of His foresight than I was the check. He had blown my mind yet again! 

God can give you a warning or give you foresight through a dream, or He can speak directly to your spirit. The same way you "heard" God through the push and pull of conviction in your spirit is the same way you'll "hear" from God when He wants to warn you or give you foresight of something to come. Don't ignore it. It's so important that you hear what He has to say. If you have dreams, write them down. When you go back to look at the patterns of how God speaks to you in dreams, that can help with interpretation down the line. It has certainly helped me. 

The Assignment
  1. Grab and date your journal.
  2. Answer the following questions, knowing that it's God who's asking you. When you respond, respond like you're talking to God.
    • After doing today's installment, do you believe I've ever spoken to you in a dream?
    • If so, what was one of those dreams? Write it down.
    • Do you remember a time when I sent you a warning or foresight directly to your spirit?
    • If so, give me an example.
    • Now, stop writing and let's talk. Do you desire for me to speak to you in dreams and/or more clearly directly to your spirit? You're no different from Joseph or Iantha or anyone else I speak to in these ways. If this is what you desire, ask me, and I will do it. If you desire to hear my voice, learn of me (in prayer and through my word), and you will learn my voice. I'm always talking. I'm looking forward to having your ear. 
I know this is our final installment, but I will have one last word for you all tomorrow just to kinda close things up. It's been quite a journey!

I'm praying for you.

-Iantha




Saturday, August 25, 2018

Day 13: A 14-Day Journey to Hearing from God

Today is the last day we will use this format to practice what we've learned on the journey. Tomorrow, our last day together, we will look at the final item on our list of ways we hear from God: warning and foresight, spoken directly to our spirits. Like I said yesterday, I pray you've enjoyed the journey, and I pray you've been tuned in to God's voice. He's always speaking through His Word. Always! And the more we talk back to him (i.e. prayer, journaling), the more our ears get tuned to His voice. 



The Assignment
  1. Grab your Bible and a computer or phone. Date your journal.
  2. Pray and ask God to open your spiritual eyes to see His Word like you've never seen it before. Ask Him to illuminate your understanding. Thank Him for living in you and speaking to you. Thank Him for this time that's dedicated to just you and Him, and thank Him for being completely tuned into you.
  3. Take this time to pray about what's on your heart. Just talk to the Lord like you would talk to your husband or wife or a friend. Let it all out. 
  4. Then, go to www.biblegateway.com. Do a topical search for scriptures on something that you are facing right now in your life, or on something that you just want to know more about. Look to your Bible and go to the scriptures that are suggested to you. Allow these scriptures to be your study for today. God wants to speak to those areas that concern you and/or lay heavy on your heart.
  5. You can follow the SOAP method today or not, but either way, you will need to write in your journal to interact with God's Word. You will need to "talk back" to the Lord about what you read and how it speaks to your heart for YOUR life. This is you TALKING to Him. You're in conversation with Him when you're responding to His Word.
  6. Now pray and talk to the Lord about today's installment. Then, set a timer for 7 minutes, and sit in silence, but keep your mind focused on what you just studied. Keep your journal open. Should anything come to you, write it down. 
I'm praying for you.

-Iantha

Friday, August 24, 2018

Day 12: A 14-Day Journey to Hearing from God

I pray you're enjoying this one on one time with the Lord. I pray you've been hearing His voice through His word. I pray He's been speaking directly to your heart. Let's continue digging in.


The Assignment
  1. Grab your Bible. Date your journal.
  2. Pray and ask God to open your spiritual eyes to see His Word like you've never seen it before. Ask Him to illuminate your understanding. Thank Him for living in you and speaking to you. Thank Him for this time that's dedicated to just you and Him, and thank Him for being completely tuned into you.
  3. Take this time to pray about what's on your heart. Just talk to the Lord like you would talk to your husband or wife or a friend. Let it all out. 
  4. Then, read Colossians 3:1-17.
  5. You can follow the SOAP method today or not, but either way, you will need to write in your journal to interact with God's Word. You will need to "talk back" to the Lord about what you read and how it speaks to your heart for YOUR life. This is you TALKING to Him. You're in conversation with Him when you're responding to His Word.
  6. Now pray and talk to the Lord about today's installment. Then, set a timer for 7 minutes, and sit in silence, but keep your mind focused on what you just studied. Keep your journal open. Should anything come to you, write it down. 
I'm praying for you.

-Iantha

Wednesday, August 22, 2018

Day 11: A 14-Day Journey to Hearing from God

Today, and for the next few days, we are simply putting into practice the things we learned throughout the journey. 

The Assignment
  1. Grab your Bible. Date your journal.
  2. Pray and ask God to open your spiritual eyes to see His Word like you've never seen it before. Ask Him to illuminate your understanding. Thank Him for living in you and speaking to you. Thank Him for this time that's dedicated to just you and Him, and thank Him for being completely tuned into you.
  3. Take this time to pray about what's on your heart. Just talk to the Lord like you would talk to your husband or wife or a friend. Let it all out. 
  4. Then, read James 3:1-12.
  5. You can follow the SOAP method (see yesterday's blog) today or not, but either way, you will need to write in your journal to interact with God's Word. You will need to "talk back" to the Lord about what you read and how it speaks to your heart for YOUR life. This is you TALKING to Him. You're in conversation with Him when you're responding to His Word.
  6. Now pray and talk to the Lord about today's installment. Then, set a timer for 7 minutes, and sit in silence, but keep your mind focused on what you just studied. Keep your journal open. Should anything come to you, write it down. 
I'm praying for you.

-Iantha

Day 10: A 14-Day Journey to Hearing from God

Today's plan was to cover the last item on our list of ways we hear from God: warning and foresight, spoken directly to our spirits, but when we walk by the Spirit, plans change. The Lord has moved us in a different direction. The new plan is to close the journey on Day 14 with warnings and foresight, and today through Day 13, is for me to simply give you the assignment for the day. 

Go back in your mind to the day that you saw the post for this journey, or the moment someone invited you to join the journey. Revisit that place in your heart and mind and remind yourself WHY you wanted to be here. Have you gotten what you wanted? Did you do your part to get it?

We've been talking for 9 days about the blessing that's ours as a result of being in relationship with Jesus. We get to hear directly from God by way of the Holy Spirit. We've talked about the different ways we hear from God, and we've even seen some practical ways to tune our ears to His voice, so now, I'm going to stop talking. We're going to practice applying what we've learned. The journey was designed for you to hear His voice, so now you have to MAKE the time and put yourself in the position, when it's seriously just you and Him, so He can speak to your heart.

The Assignment
  1. Grab your Bible. Date your journal.
  2. Pray and ask God to open your spiritual eyes to see His Word like you've never seen it before. Ask Him to illuminate your understanding. Thank Him for living in you and speaking to you. Thank Him for this time that's dedicated to just you and Him, and thank Him for being completely tuned into you.
  3. Take this time to pray about what's on your heart. Just talk to the Lord like you would talk to your husband or wife or a friend. Let it all out. 
  4. Then, read Proverbs 10:4, 12:24, 12:27, 18:9, and  6:6-11(use verses 10 and 11 for the 'S' in SOAP).
  5. Follow the SOAP method to interact with God's Word today. This is you TALKING to Him. You're in conversation with Him when you're responding to His Word.
  6. After you've prayed (the 'P' in SOAP), set a timer for 7 minutes, and sit in silence, but keep your mind focused on what you just studied. Keep your journal open. Should anything come to you, write it down. 

I'm praying for you.

-Iantha

Tuesday, August 21, 2018

Day 9: A 14-Day Journey to Hearing from God

How Do We Hear from God ?
  1. spoken word from preachers and teachers of the Word / church
  2. reading and studying God's Word
  3. talking to God and quieting ourselves to let Him talk to us (prayer)
  4. convictions (the tugging at our hearts, the push and pull in our spirits)
  5. fellowship with other believers
  6. warning and foresight, spoken directly to our spirits 


I will be the first to admit that I hear from God least in fellowship, and it's not because He doesn't speak when I'm in fellowship with other believers. He DEFINITELY does. But I don't hear from Him because I don't fellowship with other believers as often as I probably could, or as often as I should. It's an area that the Lord has recently been showing me needs to change. He's been showing me how vital relationships are and how necessary community is. He wants to challenge me in my Godly relationships so I can grow, and I'm convinced that no matter where you stand with your comfort level in close Godly relationships and Godly community, you can definitely still grow.

God reminds me, often, of the early church in the book of Acts (we visited this last week). He has shown me, on many occasions how powerful it is when we have others to lean on and when we can learn from each other's strengths and weaknesses. "As iron sharpens iron, so one man sharpens another." (Proverbs 27:17)

And when He speaks as clearly to me about fellowship and community as He has been over the past few months, He always reminds me of Hebrews 10:25. It reads, "Let us not give up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but let us encourage one another--and all the more as you see the Day approaching."


Many think that that only means meeting together at church to get instruction and to grow in our knowledge of God's Word, but it doesn't. It means gathering together with believers, period. Whenever we can get together to encourage one another or to simply just hang out and love on one another, that is the "meeting together" this verse implies.  And we all need it.

God has shown me how much we miss out on when we don't fellowship with believers. I know when I'm just hanging out with my sisters, they make me want to be better. I see them walking it out for the Lord and it makes me want to walk stronger. I hear their stories of how they've overcome challenges and obstacles and it reminds me that I can overcome. God uses fellowship with other believers to speak to us and build us, so don't forsake it. We need each other. We really, really do.

You've probably heard the saying, "No man is an island (entire of itself)." It's true. We hurt ourselves when we try to live outside of community. When we are in relationship with others, we become mirrors to one another. They can sometimes see things that we don't see until we "look into them". They're God's agents to help us, and you're His agent to help them. Close, Godly relationships and Godly community are NECESSARY.

This is an area that I feel least qualified to speak on, but I want to share with you who has helped me better understand Godly relationships and community, and who has challenged me like nobody's business to step up my game in making myself more present in my community (close Godly relationships).

The Assignment
  1. Grab your Bible. Date your journal.
  2. Watch this message: The Roller Coaster of Godly Relationships
  3. Take notes while you watch.
  4. Talk back to the Lord in your journal. What is the Lord saying to you and your heart about fellowship and community?

Some Practical Ways to Build Relationships / Foster Community
  1. Push yourself to invite one of your friends out to do something that neither of you has done. This way you have a memory of a new experience to share.
  2. If you have a church home that has cell groups, small groups, or an equivalent, GET INVOLVED and intentionally get to know people who you've never talked to.
  3. If you have a church home that has women's fellowship activities or men's fellowship activities, commit to attending at least one a month. While at the events, strike up conversation with someone you don't know well.
  4. Invite a friend over to your home for dinner.
  5. Invite a friend on a day trip to do something you both will enjoy.
Just yesterday, I was planning to go to dinner alone because honestly, that's how I like to roll. I enjoy my quiet. I was planning to bring some papers to grade and just relax at one of the restaurant's outside tables. And the Holy Spirit stopped me in my tracks with that plan. He told me to invite some of my sisters to join me.

I'm in a group chat with about 10 of my sisters from church, and can I tell you that, generally, I abhor group texts! OH MY GOD! I don't even know who put me in the group, and at first, I almost asked whoever included me to remove me, but I decided to stay. And I thank God I did! Without going into too much detail, I'll just say that I needed it, and every day, I'm grateful to be in communication with them.

I listened to the Holy Spirit and offered to have dinner with anyone in the group chat who could come. Only one was able to come (and another one met us at the very end of the dinner), but God knew just what He was doing. It was time well spent that opened up the door to a girls' trip later this year. 


More relational opportunities will blossom from the times you spend with the people you were intentional about engaging, and before you know it, you will have people in your life who will be there consistently enough to be the iron that sharpens your iron, and vice versa. And that's what the Lord desires. 

We NEED fellowship with other believers.
We NEED fellowship with other believers.
We NEED fellowship with other believers.
We NEED fellowship with other believers.