A very dear prophetic friend of ours, who has had many incredible heavenly encounters, frequently asks God this question, "What's on Your mind today, Lord?" Usually God responds with a very revelatory vision or a dramatic spiritual experience. He is often directed to share them with specific individuals or groups, and they have been a tremendous blessing to countless folks. I believe we can all learn a great lesson from my friend.
Sadly, most of God's children never ask that question. Instead, we most often ask Him questions based on our own situations or current emergencies. While God is always willing to listen and help us through our crises, we miss out on valuable revelation He would love to release to us.
I believe God is clearly speaking to His people today what He declared in the Psalms:
"Oh, that My people would listen to Me, that Israel would walk in My ways! I would soon subdue their enemies, and turn My hand against their adversaries... He would have fed them also with the finest of wheat; and with honey from the rock I would have satisfied you" (Psalm 81:13-14, 16 NKJV).
Victory and Prosperity
I hear the Holy Spirit saying today, "I am responding to the cry of My people who are asking Me for wisdom, knowledge, and understanding, as I did for King Solomon, a man who put the needs of My people before his own personal interests. To those who earnestly desire to hear My voice, I will speak with greater clarity and frequency in the coming season. Those who ask Me what is on My mind and heart will be delighted with the privilege of hearing what I will do for them. Yes, they will have great victory over the enemy of their souls and they will experience miraculous blessings from My hand."
The Acts/Isaiah Connection
God spoke to me recently that He is reviving the Acts/Isaiah connection in my life and the Church's.
Later this year I will be celebrating the 50th anniversary of my life-changing, personal revival as a freshman in Canadian Bible College in Regina, Saskatchewan, Canada. During that time I bathed my heart and soul each morning in the Book of Acts. I was drawn morning after morning into the powerful story of the explosive expansion of the early Church. I had asked God for His burden, and He gave me so much more than I expected. I wept daily in deep intercession for God to revive His Church.
I'm just realizing, as I write this, that I had basically asked the same question that my friend now asks God on a regular basis. "What is on Your mind, Lord?" In my case it was, "Jesus, what is the burden on Your heart?"
The important point here is that we both put God's Kingdom before our own issues, and God responded with powerful encounters. I need to add that my intercession was not in vain. I was blessed to participate in two powerful revivals on two different continents in the following eight years that had an incredible, lasting influence on my life and ministry.
The next book of the Bible that came alive to me was the Book of Isaiah. Actually, God spoke to me through Isaiah regarding a beautiful girl named Brenda, who was His choice to accompany me on this wild journey we've been on – from pastoral ministry to itinerant prophetic and teaching ministry, to mission trips.
While the whole Book of Isaiah is alive with precious promises, the latter 27 chapters of this prophetic book contain especially relevant promises, most of which have yet to be fulfilled. While Acts gives us the exciting history of the early Church, Isaiah gives us the future history in advance of both Israel and the Church.
Acts is a powerful example of what happened when God spoke and His people listened. Just read Acts with this in mind and you'll see that the apostles and others totally depended on the voice of God for everything they did.
Isaiah, on the other hand is a powerful promise of what God will do again when His people once again incline their ears to hear His voice.
Here are a few relevant verses:
"Listen to Me, you who follow after righteousness, you who seek the LORD: Look to the rock from which you were hewn, and to the hole of the pit from which you were dug. Look to Abraham your father, and to Sarah who bore you; for I called him alone, and blessed him and increased him."
"For the LORD will comfort Zion, He will comfort all her waste places; He will make her wilderness like Eden, and her desert like the garden of the LORD; joy and gladness will be found in it, thanksgiving and the voice of melody.
"Listen to Me, My people; and give ear to Me, O My nation: For law will proceed from Me, and I will make My justice rest as a light of the peoples. My righteousness is near, My salvation has gone forth, and My arms will judge the peoples; the coastlands will wait upon Me, and on My arm they will trust" (Isaiah 51:1-5 NKJV).
I strongly believe that these precious promises apply to both natural Israel and spiritual Israel, the Church. These verses speak of destiny, blessings, increase, comfort, transformation, joy and gladness, thanksgiving and music. It also promisesdivine rule and justice, light and deliverance. These are truly wonderful and awesome promises that we shouldn't take lightly or overlook. Doesn't it sound to you like we'd be very wise to listen to His voice before we ask Him to listen to ours? Here's another passage:
"Listen to Me, you who know righteousness, you people in whose heart is My law: Do not fear the reproach of men, nor be afraid of their insults. For the moth will eat them up like a garment, and the worm will eat them like wool; but My righteousness will be forever, and My salvation from generation to generation" (Isaiah 51:7-8 NKJV).
These verses are promises of deliverance and victory over our enemies if we listen to His voice.
The next passage is a favorite of mine which I love to teach from regarding prophetic ministry. The key here is what the prophet declares about his ears being awakened:
"The Lord GOD has given me the tongue of the learned, that I should know how to speak a word in season to him who is weary. He awakens me morning by morning, He awakens my ear to hear as the learned. The Lord GOD has opened my ear; and I was not rebellious, nor did I turn away" (Isaiah 50:4-5 NKJV).
When our ears are tuned in to His voice we have His divine wisdom to be an incredible, supernatural blessing to countless people. This is truly a far greater blessing than personal prosperity, but God may also choose to bless us, like He did Solomon, if we have a heart to expand His Kingdom more than our own.
Other important passages in Isaiah include chapter 40, which speaks comfort and the end of judgment and warfare. Chapter 60 promises a revival of light or revelation and the transfer of wealth to bless Israel and the Kingdom of Heaven on the earth. Chapter 61 speaks about the anointing that was first on Jesus, then on the early Church, and will come in power again on the Church of this age. I could go on and on. Every chapter has prophetic promises that can be applied to our season on earth.
Other Reasons to Listen
1. IT'S THE VOICE OF OUR BELOVED
I can't emphasize enough how important it is in this season to listen to the voice of God. First of all, it's not just another voice, it's the voice of our Beloved. No one cares about our lives and destinies like He does. He has proven His love on the Cross and thousands of times in our daily lives. He reveals His secrets to those who truly love Him, not necessarily to the most brilliant scholars who research the Hebrew, Greek and Aramaic, unless they also have a deep love relationship with Him and give Him the glory for their discoveries.
2. IT'S THE VOICE OF WISDOM.
If we ever needed wisdom, we need it today, and if we truly desire to please our Bridegroom, we have to listen to His words to know how to please Him. He is truly loving and kind, and along with His encouragement to help us build His Kingdom, He will also impart wisdom to us for all the troubles we face in this life. When we sit at His feet like Mary of Bethany, we will learn many things, for Solomon said in Proverbs 2:6:
"For the Lord gives wisdom; from His mouth come knowledge and understanding."
May we have the wisdom to position ourselves at His feet to receive His wisdom, knowledge, and understanding!
3. IT'S THE VOICE OF FAITH.
God has been impressing on me that He is giving more of the gift of faith to those who ask for it, because He will open many new doors this season that will require that faith. We know that faith comes by hearing His words, His rhema words to our spirit. Thus, if we listen to His voice we will also receive His faith to go through new doors and accomplish new things for His glory.
4. JESUS WILL REVEAL MYSTERIES OF THE KINGDOM
During worship recently, before I was called up to speak in a church in Alberta, Canada, I opened my Bible and God spoke a fresh word for His people. It was a specific word for that Church, but God wants me to share it also with all His true disciples. Here it is:
"He answered and said to them, 'Because it has been given to you to know the mysteries of the Kingdom of Heaven, but to them it has not been given'" (Matthew 13:11).
Jesus was speaking to His disciples, and I don't think the Church has adequately embraced this truth. Jesus is saying that we, who truly are His disciples, have been given the privilege of knowing the mysteries of the Kingdom of Heaven. He only explained the parables to the disciples, because they had surrendered their destinies to Him, and were totally committed to building His Kingdom, even though they had no idea at that time what His Kingdom would look like. They were followers, servants, and students of His. Thus, they would hear the secrets or mysteries of the Kingdom that others wouldn't hear.
I feel so strongly that God's heart is longing for true disciples again. Who will say, "Yes!" to His invitation to spend time listening to Him? Multitudes came to get healed and see what all the excitement was about, but few followed Him close enough to learn the secrets of the Kingdom. This is why it's so important that we don't do all the talking in His presence. When you are with a person who is much wiser and more experienced than you, it's always wisdom to let them do most of the talking.
The practice of "soaking" that my wife, Brenda, has thrived on is a move of God to open the ears of His true disciples. I encourage everyone to practice soaking in His presence as much as possible, and while you are soaking, tell God you are listening like Samuel did. God will surely speak to you and give you the fresh revelation that you or someone in your life needs. Don't quit if you don't hear anything the first time. Be persistent and you will be rewarded.
Ask the Right Question to Get the Right Answer
In the light of so many crises in our world and the spirit of fear that has been released on the earth, we have never needed to hear the voice of God like we do today. As we shared at the beginning, it's important to ask God what He is thinking about. What's on His mind and His heart?
God will not ignore our own needs or circumstances, especially when we demonstrate that we care more about His Kingdom than our own. His promise is demonstrably true – if we seek first His Kingdom and His righteousness, He will meet every need and righteous desire in our hearts. May He awaken our ears to listen and hear and gain His wisdom for these troubled times!
Ben and Brenda Peters have said, "YES" to the call of God to challenge, equip and send dedicated lovers of Jesus into the harvest fields of the earth, including the seven mountains of society. Together they have ministered to tens of thousands of individuals in several countries of the world. After establishing churches and Christian schools for almost thirty years, they began a traveling ministry in 1999, under the name, Open Heart Ministries, speaking, teaching and prophesying in conferences, camps, churches, ministry schools (including Wagner Leadership Institute) and homes. More recently, they also founded an Illinois-based ministry, called, Kingdom Sending Center, after hearing from God during a Heidi Baker meeting in Chicago. Ben began writing revelatory books in 2000, and has published 22 of them since then, and his newest book is HOLY HOW? Holiness, the Sabbath, Communion and Baptism. Ben and Brenda have five children and 12 grandchildren.
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