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Winter Newsletter 2019
“Yes! You Can Hear God's Voice”
By McKade Marshall
Did you know inside each and every person there is a divine deposit of God’s glory? When God created mankind, He made us different from the rest of all creation. We were not like another planet or galaxy He formed on Day 4 of Creation (see Genesis 1:14-19). We were not like the fish and birds He designed on Day 5 (Genesis 1:20-23), nor the animals, cattle, or creepy crawling insects on Day 6 (Genesis 1:24-26). Instead, God made us as a replica and in the divine image of Himself. He made us to look just like Him.
Because you are a child of God, you have the ability to hear what God is saying to you personally. Jesus tells His disciples in John 10:27 (NASB), “My sheep hear My voice, and I know them, and they follow Me.” Friends, if you have received Jesus Christ as your personal Lord and Savior, then you have received the full package of God’s Kingdom and the full inheritance Christ offers to all who believe in Him. Jesus goes on to say in the next verse, “I give eternal life to them, and they will never perish; and no one will snatch them out of My hand.” (John 10:28 NASB) The moment you place your faith in Jesus for salvation the Bible says you are spiritually born again, and God deposits His Holy Spirit in your heart as a guarantee that you will go on to live with Him forever in eternity (Ephesians 1:13-14).
As a follower of Christ, you have the ability to hear what God is saying to you. The Lord speaks to us in many different ways. One of the most obvious ways God speaks is through His Word, or the Bible. The Bible is the oracles of God spoken and recorded through men and women inspired by the Holy Spirit. The Apostle Paul tells us in 2 Timothy 3:16 (NIV), “All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, so that the servant of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work.” God has given us the Scriptures so that we might read, know, and understand what He has commissioned us to do with our lives. When we understand who God is and what He says through His Word then we are empowered to live in a way that honors God.
A few weeks ago I was preparing a sermon for an upcoming speaking engagement. Now before I ever start preparing a message or begin writing I always ask God to speak to my heart in order to share what He wants me to share with my audience. If I ever deliver a message, write a book, film a gospel video, or construct a newsletter, I do not want the words to merely be my own thoughts and not something inspired directly by the Spirit of God! The Apostle Paul held the same conviction whenever he wrote or spoke, saying in 1 Corinthians 2:4 (NLT), “My message and my preaching were very plain. Rather than using clever and persuasive speeches, I relied only on the power of the Holy Spirit.”
I assure you I would not be able to write as much as I do today if it were not for the power of the Holy Spirit enabling me to live out the calling to write. For years I had attempted to write a book and film a gospel video with no resolve and no direction. However, it was only after complete surrender to God and getting into a place of true worship that this gifting began to come alive. Today the Holy Spirit continues to break down barriers and open doors I never thought possible before! As I asked God to help me prepare the message for the upcoming Sunday service, my mind was flooded with thoughts and different Scriptures as I wrote the sermon outline. I like to describe these times of revelation, when God floods my mind with ideas and thoughts from above, as “downloads from Heaven”.
Right now I want you to get this idea into your spirit that you too can have “downloads from Heaven”. Imagine for a moment that you are sitting at home or in an office in front of a computer. On this computer you have a great web browser and internet service. The computer runs smoothly. The screen is bright and easy to read from. However, your computer may not have all the information you are looking for sitting on your computer desktop so you need to browse the internet to look for it. The only way to retrieve the information you are searching for is by first clicking on your web browser (like Google Chrome, Mozilla Firefox, or Internet Explorer).
Once you pull up your web browser you must then go to a search engine and type in the information you are looking for. In essence, you are asking the search engine to go find all the information it can on whatever it is you are looking for. For instance, if you type in “birthday gift ideas” in the search engine bar and hit enter, in a split second literally millions of link results are made available pertaining to this subject matter. Suggestions could range from gourmet birthday desserts to an office organizer. However, if you start getting more specific, you are going to get more specific results. If you type in “birthday gift ideas for five year old boys”, the results are going to be more detailed and likely include lots of play toys!
In the same way, you have inside of you something similar to a search engine. This “search engine” has more information and knowledge than any web browser could possibly offer you. You have the Holy Spirit, which already knows all things. God already knows what you need before you even ask (see Matthew 6:8). Today I believe God wants to “download” some information into your heart and mind that is from Him. If a man-made computer can download a file to your computer hard drive or pull up a web browser full of links relating to what it is you are looking for, then certainly the Creator of Heaven and earth can get you the information you need into your heart and mind.
So how do we “download” ideas and thoughts that are from God? First, we must acknowledge that we indeed do have the ability to hear God’s voice. When we have ears that are listening for what God wants to speak to us, then we are going to be more receptive when God does speak. We also must invite God to give us a spirit of revelation and understanding. Could it be one reason we do not hear God’s voice more often is simply because we are not asking Him to speak to us? As believers, we can never out ask God. It is better to err on the side of asking God too often than not asking Him enough.
The Bible tells us not to worry about what to say when we speak about God. Jesus tells His disciples in Matthew 10:19-20 (NIV), “But when they arrest you, do not worry about what to say or how to say it. At that time you will be given what to say, for it will not be you speaking, but the Spirit of your Father speaking through you.” God wants to speak through you, as you are one of His ambassadors in this world. He wants to use you to reach the lost and undone. While it is awesome to see God use others who travel overseas and give up their lives of security and comfort here to reach the lost in a third world country, you are not exempt from being used by God to reach the lost and broken also.
You have a calling and a purpose from God to fulfill. Your life matters to God. He wants to communicate to you through His Word and by speaking to your inner spiritual person. A few years ago I spent a few days in the hills of Hollywood working on an entrepreneurial project for a friend. During this time I had a lot of quiet time to also seek God and pray. At the time I felt so unworthy and unable to act and work in the film industry. I was really wrestling with this personal insecurity and doubt. However, as I was reading a passage from the book of Psalms one day, I came across a verse that said, “I lie awake, I have become like a lonely bird on a housetop.” (Psalm 102:7 NASB) As I sat there praying, all of the sudden I saw a bird fly down and rest itself on the corner of the roof by the window. Right then I heard God say to me, “McKade, you are going to act again! You are an actor.”
As I heard this loud voice so clear within me, I knew it could only be God. Suddenly, I began to sob and feel the overwhelming love of God the Father, as His presence in the room was so strong. Up to this point of my stay in Los Angeles, I had not done much film work. However, that very night I got a call from a friend at church asking me if I could be one of the actors on a set being filmed in Topanga, not too far from there. My jaw fell to the floor. Of course I was available! This experience is one I will never forget, as the voice of God never sounded so loud in my mind, body, and soul that day.
Human reasoning may tell us that an experience like the one I had in Hollywood was just a coincidence. The timing of an unexpected phone call just happened by luck and chance. However, as Christians we know all things are subject to God. Jesus says in Acts 1:7 (NLT), “The Father alone has the authority to set those dates and times.” God has marked on His calendar the exact time and place He wants to do something extraordinary in your life. He is not subject to what is going on in the natural world. He can overrule and overturn even the laws of nature. Jesus proved this overriding power when He walked on water, raised Lazarus from the dead, multiplied food, and performed many other miracles outside the scope of what is possible in the natural world.
God can speak to you and perform acts of power through you because He is God. He is subject to no one! Before Jesus ascended into Heaven, He told His disciples that they would be “clothed with power” from Heaven (see Luke 24:49). Today we know this clothing of power as the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit is what gives us power to operate beyond the limitations set by the environment around us. You may have come from a poor family, but God has a way of breaking you out of lack. He has abundance in store for you. You may have struggled with an illness or a disease for years, but God has healing for you that supersedes even what medicine can do. You may have struggled with an addiction most of your life, but with God you can be set free.
No matter what your struggle is, you have the power given to you from on high to overcome it. You have God your Father’s power living on the inside, and Yes! You can hear God’s voice. Not only do you have access to His supernatural power, but you can also hear God speak. Hearing God’s voice is not some super-ability given only to the people we read about in the Bible. Hearing God’s voice is a normal ability given to anyone who believes in Him. If you are struggling to hear God right now, and we all do at times, I encourage you to press in and seek the Lord. Read the Bible. Ask verbally out loud for God to speak to your mind and heart.
As of the writing of this newsletter, there are people all over the country who are reading daily devotionals from my first book Tasting the Goodness of God: 31 Daily Devotionals for Everyday Living. Every year I host an annual event called #31DayChallenge, where I invite people to sign up and read one devotional every day in the month of January to start the New Year off right by spending time with God. This is my fifth year to moderate the event. I am always amazed at who God draws to participate in #31DayChallenge, and then to hear and see what God is doing during and after the challenge.
One of the things I encourage all participants and people following along during #31DayChallenge every year to do is for them to pause for a couple of minutes after reading each devotional and get still before God. Allow Him time to speak back. God wants us to develop this personal relationship with Him. He wants us to be still long enough for Him to speak to our hearts and encourage us, love us, and even advise us. Jesus often went away for hours in the wilderness in order to hear from God (see Luke 5:16). If Jesus, who is the Son of God, had to withdraw from people and the distractions of the world in order to hear from God and pray, then how much more should we as His followers?
This winter I believe we are in a season of hearing God’s voice more clear than ever before. Spiritually dull ears are being opened, and hearts are being receptive to what God wants to say to people through His Spirit and by His Word. Like turning up the speakers on a stereo system, God’s people are turning up their spiritual ears to hear God’s voice louder and more clearly. Like an online search engine that pulls up information you are looking for, God’s Spirit is bringing to your mind things your soul needs to know in order for you to have more peace and to live out your divine calling. As you seek God every day, doing your best to honor Him, I believe He is going to release at just the right time those extraordinary blessings He has already set on His calendar in Heaven to be yours!
In closing, if you are subscribed to my newsletters but do not receive weekly e-mails from me, I encourage you to go to www.McKadeMarshall.com and submit your e-mail address on the contact page. Every Sunday I e-mail hundreds of subscribers a 15 to 20 minute video called “Word of the Week” with an inspiring Christian message. I do not want you to miss out on these weekly videos so make sure you are signed up to receive “Word of the Week” in your e-mail inbox every Sunday!
I declare this winter that Yes! You can hear God’s voice. As you spend time with God, He is releasing more revelation of His
love and the divine plans He has prepared for your life. Just as Jesus retreated to the wilderness to commune with God, I believe God desires to commune with you. Through the Scriptures and by the
voice of the Holy Spirit living in you, your sense of direction and purpose in life is growing stronger. For any time you stumble or make a mistake, God is there to help you get back up and keep
moving forward. With the Lord’s help, there is nothing you cannot accomplish! I love you, and I am praying for you.
In His grace,
McKade “Levi” Marshall
Author of "Finding Your Keys", "BREATHE", and "Tasting the Goodness of God"
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