What’s in Your Toolbox? Hearing God’s Leading
Have you ever had someone give you a scripture saying they believe the Lord wants to use it to speak to you, yet it doesn’t seem to fit anywhere in your life? Hold it. I mean literally hold onto it – write it down, log it, memorize it.
I have a wonderful friend who has often done this for me. At times, the scripture or insight exactly fits with what I’m facing. Other times we talk through it and can’t seem to connect the dots. But I know she is a woman of God gifted in intercession and speaking into my life and others’. So I hold on to it.
One such scripture was Isaiah 30:21:
With your ears you will hear a word from behind you: “This is the way; stay on it, whether you go to the right or the left.”
At the time, I was in the midst of decisions about my career. I was seeking direction amid some personal issues that had disrupted my plan. One turn of events after another had me reeling in confusion as to what direction to take.
This scripture certainly pertained to a direction, but was unclear about which path to take, the right or the left or the one straight ahead. As we discussed it, we were reminded of several verses instructing us to veer “neither to the right or to the left” (Deut. 28:14, Joshua 1:7, 2 Kings 22:2, Prov. 4:27). But this was different. How can both right and left be correct?
After one more “turn” of events, its meaning finally dawned on me: The path will be curvy, turning right AND left, but stay on it, it is the right way. Wow, was I glad I kept that verse within reach! It assured me that God knew my confusion and that I was still on His path and could continue with confidence, no matter how many turns it took.
I have come to realize this is often how God speaks to me. I now view it as God packing my toolbox. It would be as if a master builder packed his apprentice’s toolbox each week. The apprentice doesn’t know what jobs he’ll be called on to do that week. But as soon as he’s faced with a situation he’s unsure of, he opens his toolbox and sure enough – his master has packed just the right tool for that circumstance. There may be two or three tools that can be combined to create the perfect solution. There may be one left over from the week before that reinforces it even more.
Remember when the shepherds visited Mary, Joseph and Baby Yeshua in Bethlehem? They told them the angel’s proclamation of Yeshua being the Deliverer and Messiah (Luke 2). The Bible tells us, “Mary treasured all these things and kept mulling them over in her heart.” She didn’t try to make sense of them all right then. She believed and accepted the shepherd’s message even though she couldn’t see how it fit or how it would work out. But how many times would you imagine she repeated the shepherd’s words to herself for reassurance as things progressed? Years later she came to understand their meaning.
This may be one way God speaks to you. If so, don’t discard the message because it doesn’t make sense today. Keep a list of the insights you’ve been given. As you’re looking for guidance, check your toolbox. God just may have already provided the answer you need.
Remember Moses’ admonition to Joshua:
But Adonai — it is he who will go ahead of you. He will be with you. He will neither fail you nor abandon you, so don’t be afraid or downhearted.” Deut. 31:8