So first off, I am sorry it's been a while. I've not had the inspiration when I've had the time and not had the time when I'm inspired. This had led to an empty void of 3 months passing with no new thoughts. Regardless, I hope you think this one is good.
Have you ever wondered if you hear God or if that voice inside is just you? Well today that happened to me. Let me tell you what happened.
I found myself today at a cross roads, literally. I was standing at the t-junction deciding should I go left and try to get home before it rains on my clothes hanging on the line or should I go right and continue with my day's plan of going to the gym before dinner plans at a friend's place?
I was feeling a little tired and I could see the traffic that was stacked up and a little voice inside me said I should go home before it poured. Stopping for a moment, I asked if this was the Holy Spirit directing me. However, on the other hand I was just minutes away from a great workout, which I had been looking forward to and planning since the start of the day. I had all my things ready to go, maybe I was just being lazy by wanting to go home. ...So with that thought, I continued my original plan and walked myself to the gym.
Upon arriving at the gym I was still feeling a bit "ish" about the whole thing. Not sure if it was me or God giving this hesitation, I stopped outside to reconsider and then deduced it was me needing to, 'just do it,' as Nike would say. So I locked up my things and changed into my stunning workout clothes (yes, this is sarcasm, one can only be so stunning in shin-high socks and capris). I eyed the weight floor and saw I was there just before the wave of testosterone usually hits (around 5pm when work lets out and you can't find a bench or dumbbells to work with). With enthusiasm I found an unused weight bar and began my deadlift warmups.
I was one rep into my first set when I felt a nagging feeling; one that said I really should not be there. At this point I can no longer put it down to my laziness, I was reallllllllllllllly looking forward to throwing some weights around. With the fact that I had allowed myself to get all this way and I was still feeling the urge to go home, I said it would be better to leave and look like a crazy person (I mean really, who leaves the gym just 5 mins after changing into the proper clothes?) then to stick around if I were not meant to be there.
On the way home, traffic was still terrible, but it was not for this reason that I decided to walk. The voice inside me led me to just walk home. As I walked, I prayed, boy did I pray! I mean whatever the reason for interrupting my workout, it must have been pretty big. Everything and everyone who came to mind I lay at the feet of Jesus, I claimed healing by the blood, protection by the Son, new life, love and revelation! Walking still, I found that maybe it was not for any of these things that I was pulled from my ever-so-desirable workout. Maybe, just maybe, it was because God knew if He got my attention I would be focused on Him in those moments rather than being focused on adding 5 more kgs (yeah, here nothing is in pounds, that's a transition if you're used to lifting 25s and now can only do 10s haha) to the squat rack.
I'm grateful that I chose to listen and to go spend time with my Savior, who I realized is very jealous over me. Am I 100% totally convinced that God told me to quit my workout? No. But I'm happy that I did. And who knows, maybe something awful would have happened if I didn't listen, or maybe something good happened because I did leave; some things we will not know until eternity. There is no telling what harm is avoided or what good will come of one simple act of obedience. You say that it can't be obedience if I don't even know it was for sure God who was speaking.
Well, you have a point. However, I would much rather be obedient and look a little silly in the process to do something that isn't directly from God (obviously, I know this direction to leave the gym is not against God's will; if it were, that's a different story), then to miss what He has for me because I'm too busy trying to work out if it is really His voice.
Don't quote me on this, but I think that sometimes God will speak to us just to see if we are listening. He will give us chances to follow Him in what seems like a pointless task or a useless ask; then, only through our obedience will we find out that He was wanting to bless us through it. When we are faithful with the little things, we are then able to handle the bigger things. I can say that I was truly blessed by putting up my weights and walking home with Jesus. We talked, I prayed, He reminded me how He likes "us" time, and you know what, I even got a workout! That is no short walk home, I tell you. :)
So I challenge you, the next time you feel "prompted," instead of dismissing it as something crazy, take a step of faith, trust God and go for it! What do you have to loose by obedience? There's a lot greater loss in missing out when you go your own way, and there is so much to gain when you obey!
*Please note that God will NEVER contradict His written Word. If you feel that inner voice telling you something contrary to Scripture, it is NOT the Holy Spirit or of God. I hope this story helps you in your journey just a bit. :) Feel free to comment and share your own "Is this God or me?" moments. :)