The Leading of His Still Small Voice
by: Lalenunat Johnson
“ Lean on, trust in, and be confident in the Lord with all your heart and mind and do not rely on your own insight or understanding. In all your ways know, recognize, and acknowledge Him, and He will direct and make straight and plain your paths.” Proverbs 3:5-6 AMPC
You know, there are times when the Lord will prompt us to do things that fall outside of our comfort zone. It might be to go over and say something to someone, or even to sew a financial seed at a time when you feel that you just really do not have it to give. Well, what about when He prompts you to sew your time, space, and commitment and it looks as if this just cannot be done? You think, “It’s just too much”.
I was recently faced with a decision, a serious and strong consideration. I had to decide if I would open my home, take in, and care for some children that were in need of care. They were family members who, if I did take in, would be moved out of foster care and placed with family.
Boy, did I hear the comments and thoughts of others. Some, who would not take them in themselves, would encourage me to do so. You have to do this. Speak it and call those children in to your home. Cancel any opposition, and so on and so forth. Easy for them to say. The commitment and responsibility would be on me, not on them.
Yet, others would say, “Are you sure you want to do this? You know your job requires you to travel some. You need to consider ministry at this point of your life. What if God sends your husband and you now have children to care for?” After all, my youngest was just around the corner of turning 22 years old, and I totally enjoyed my freedom to move about however I should choose.
So, my heart said, “Yes, these children need to be cared for. I can sit around and wait for someone else to do it or I could act.” But I also knew that I have to be free to move forward in ministry as the Lord leads. Where would the monies come from to care for them? Funds were already tight. “So, what are you gonna do?” I asked myself.
“And after the earthquake a fire, but the Lord was not in the fire; and after the fire [a sound of gentle stillness and] a still, small voice.” 1 Kings 19:12
Finally, one morning while sitting at the table for our office morning prayer, a personal prayer stirred in my spirit. I was having a peaceful and quiet heart conversation with the Lord. I heard the softest, still, and quiet question, “How would you feel about the children coming to stay with you”. Instantly, my immediate, purest, and most genuine heartfelt reply was one of joy and happiness as I said, “I would love the opportunity for them to live with me for a season”. I can best describe it by saying that my heart smiled at the thought, I smiled, and I felt all warm and fuzzy inside!
Within seconds, my cell phone pinged and there was a message from the social services worker informing me that there had been a change in the children’s case! I called the worker just to find that the judge, worker, supervisors, and the children’s mom and dad had unanimously decided that the kids would be best served if placed in my home. They had approved an emergency placement and planned to have them in my care as soon as they could secure flights.
Yes, this was an out of state transfer which was even more amazing. They had decided to overlook any and all foster or other care options in the state where they resided and had legally assigned them to my care in Arizona. That was a Thursday morning and they were in my home by Monday!
To make the right decision, I had to look past all others’ thoughts and opinions. I had to look past the earthquake of the calls and comments I was inundated with. I had to ignore the fire of the imposed seriousness of not taking them and the equally important pressure of what could happen if I did not. I had to look past all of these thoughts and considerations and not lean on my own understanding, but get quiet and hear the still small voice – the leading of Holy Spirit.
Day one, I opened the door and they ran into my arms – such an awesome feeling that I will never forget. They have now been in my home for over 2 ½ months. In that time, they have grown so much and are developing their relationship with the Lord. One has even asked to be baptized! Although we have received no financial assistance from social services, the Lord has provided and they have wanted for nothing. Where the Lord guides, He provides!
Can you think of a time when you “leaned to your own understanding” taking matters into your own hands? How did that work out for you and what could you do differently next time?
What question or consideration are you facing right now? What decision are you grappling with that you need Holy Spirit’s guidance in?
Make a commitment today to seek the Lord’s guidance, share your area you are going to do this in below, then listen, and heed.
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