Life Verses – On Fire

Searching His Word
Seeking His Heart

Most life verses are ones you might write down in the back of your Bible or make into a poster for your wall as a guiding thought. Today I share with you a long experience where two verses were brought to mind by what I experienced, a reflection so to speak of verses I already knew.

The setting is twenty years ago. I had been writing scripts and skits for children’s choir groups and writing Bible study/devotionals for Youth Choir groups. I’d been published in a book of short stories. So I had been writing, but I sensed the Lord urging me to write more, perhaps in a different direction.

I would drive by a book store and see a sign that had something to do with writing or hear someone talking about writing. “I am writing,” I wanted to reason with God.

After a few weeks went by, I was driving down the expressway and glanced at the license plate on the car in front of me. I kid you not, the license plate read, WRITE! I cried out, “Okay, Lord, what is it you want me to write?”

A couple of months later, I attended a conference. One of the break-out sessions related to God’s purposes in our lives. The leader spoke of being in communication with God and seeking His will in all the directions we go. She gave examples of friends who had moved this way or that way in their life paths and then she mentioned someone who was a writer and felt the Lord leading her to write a book.

My heart throbbed. A warm flow started in my feet and legs and worked its way up through my body until I felt like I was on fire. It was as though the Lord had taken a branding iron and seared across my chest the word, “Write!”

My thoughts turned to the words of Cleopas when he and his companion met the resurrected Jesus on the road to Emmaus. After Jesus left them, they said,

“Were not our hearts burning within us while he talked with us on the road and opened the Scriptures to us?” Luke 24:32

“Is this the way they felt?” I wondered. Again I cried out, “I’ll write, Lord, but what is it you want me to write?”

I discovered that sometimes the Lord takes a long time in bringing us to the fullness of His will. In fact, so long that I can’t complete this one in only a single blog. We’ll need to stay tuned next week for “the rest of the story.”

Thank you to those who have sent in their life verses—Psalm41:3, Jeremiah 30:14, Psalm 103:2, and I Thessalonians 5:16-18.

Please keep your life verses coming so that we all might benefit!

 ~ Joyce ~

 

 

“Didn’t My Heart Burn Within Me?”

Searching His Word   Seeking His Heart

Searching His Word
Seeking His Heart

Last week, we looked at this powerful statement of faith by the two on the road to Emmaus. I asked, “When has your heart burned because of the Holy Spirit’s work within you ?”

I promised this week to share some of my life experiences.

1) One summer night,  after my freshman year of college, I knelt beside my bed to pray. The more I prayed, the more I felt the Spirit’s convicting power. At the same time, I understood His mercy to forgive.

Simple phrases I had heard (and said) all my life, suddenly took on fresh meaning. “God loves me” became personally my statement, not my parents’ or my Sunday School teacher’s, but mine. I felt such a presence of the Holy Spirit that it seemed there was a glow of light in the room.

For some time, I wondered if this had been my salvation experience. I later decided that my eight year-old profession of faith was simple but genuine and that this experience was one of many big steps forward.

2) When Jim and I were serving at a church in music and youth ministry, we had a quiet, talented youth who seemed to have had his own spiritual epiphany. He gave challenges to the youth group and I saw through him the transforming power of the Spirit to produce amazing growth with the whole group. In many moments, our hearts burned within us.

3) We had entered a time of trial with our son. At one point, he had left home. We went to a baseball game where he was scheduled to play, but he didn’t show up. I distinctly remember standing under a tree, disheartened and worried. At that moment, it was as though God blew a verse right into my mind.

…but those who wait upon the Lord will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint. Isaiah 40:31

The key word was “wait” and there would be a lot of waiting before we could soar, but the verse warmed my heart. The following Sunday, that verse was on the front of our church bulletin. “Thank you, Lord,” I whispered. Didn’t my heart burn within me at His consistent presence!

4) In these later years, the Lord began dealing with me about writing. One day as I drove down the road, the license plate in front of me said, “Write!” I tried to figure out what form that would take.

Then, when I attended a conference, the small group leader talked about continuing to seek the Lord’s will in our lives. One of her examples was of a friend who ended up writing books. At that moment, a warm sensation began in my legs and moved up through my body. It was as though the Lord took a branding iron and seared the word “Write!” across my heart. I thought immediately of the quote, “Didn’t our hearts burn within us?”

I would love to hear or even share your experience.

~ Joyce ~