Joe: I guess it's a question. It's probably more like a complaint though.
God: Well, it has been my experience that a person complains if they do
not fully understand something.
Joe: I always thought that I complained a lot, but I like the way you look
at it. You're right I don't understand a lot of things. Like this God, why
don't you listen to me when I tell you something bad is going to happen.
If you would listen, you could step in and put a stop to things that are
going on. I mean, even I can see the potential problems.
God: My child, I do listen to you, I listen to everything you say. I count
every hair on your head. I catch every tear you cry.
Joe: If that's true then it's all nice God, but don't you see how frustrating
it is when my kids get into trouble. Trouble that you could have kept them
out of if you would have answered my prayers.
God: What prayers, specifically, haven't I answered?
Joe: Ok, God, it's like this; I told my son not to drink due to the problems
with alcoholism in our family history and I prayed to you and asked you not
to let him have that first drink. But you didn't answer my prayer and now
my sons is a full blown alcoholic.
God: So you think that I should have kept your son from having that first
Joe: Yes, after all, you said if I ask anything in your name that you will
answer me and I will have what ever I ask for.
God: Can you tell me where you find that Joe?
Joe: Well, God, you know your Bible better than I do.
God: That is true Joe and I have not forgotten a single word I have ever
spoken. But I want to know if you understand what I said or if you
are only listening to what others have told you.
Joe: Ok, I get you now. Well, I'm pretty proud of myself because I found
that scripture in John chapter 14. Jesus is talking to the disciples and
telling them that if they ask for anything in his name you will do it. So,
if you said that to them, and I am also your follower, why don't you do what
God: Joe, it's necessary to look at everything I have said, in my Bible,
in context. I find that most people have trouble understanding Me when they
pull a scripture out context.
Joe: Ok God, I think I see what you mean. I know that Jesus was talking
with the disciples and they are asking a lot of questions.
God: Were not all the questions answered?
Joe: Yes, but he never seemed to just answer, instead he answered
with a question. Like where Philip said, "show us the Father and it
is enough for us."
God: And Jesus replied that if they had seen him they had seen Me.
Joe: That's what I mean God, they saw Jesus, not you.
God: But what Jesus is saying here Joe, is that he is in my nature. You
see, I live in man. Have I not told you that I dwell in you? (Rom. 8:11)
Joe: But that is so hard to imagine. I mean, I am so full of sin and faults.
God: There you have it Joe. The disciples saw Jesus as a man. They watched
him disobey the laws of the Pharisees. They saw him "work" on the
Sabbath. They saw him get angry in the synagogue. The disciples were looking
at him and thinking, "you are just like we are."
Joe: WOW! I never saw that before. I know that the Bible tells about all
those things. I mean, after all, Thomas had just asked Jesus a question and
Jesus replied, "If ye had known me, ye should have known my Father also:
and from henceforth ye know him, and have seen him."
God: That's correct. The one that many call "doubting Thomas" said
that. But Phillip also doubted for he immediately said, "Lord, show
us the Father, and it satisfies us."
Joe: That's right and Jesus went on to say that they should believe him
just because of the works that they saw him do. I can see now how they were looking
at the human side of Jesus, not the Divine side.
God: That's the way it is with the Bible Joe. Your heart has to turn toward
me so that you can receive enlightenment. Do you understand what turning
your heart towards me means?
Joe: Well, not exactly, for you see God, I feel like my heart has always
been turned toward you.
God: Joe, in Ephesians chapter's 1 and 2, Paul talks about the eyes of your
understanding being enlightened; that you may know what is the hope of my
calling. Here you learn that until you are enlightened, you lack understanding.
Joe: Ok God, I know that you and your Bible are to hard understand.
God: Very Good. For you see, when you question a man made doctrine you
start receiving enlightenment. For much is spoken of as truth from my Word
and yet if one searches, many times they will find what they were told is not
even in the Bible.
Joe: So then why do people we trust tell us things that are untrue?
God: There are two reasons Joe. One is because they are parroting what they
were told. Often it is easier to believe what "everyone" else is
saying than to "buck" the system. And another reason is found in
Jeremiah 14:14-18. Here it says that the prophets, who are those that establish
the way, were not sent by me. They were those who sought their own will and
Joe: So how do we know which are true prophets and which are false?
God: When you look into my Word you will find some good examples. For instance
look at Luke 1:76-79 where I am speaking about a prophet called John the
Baptist. Here I say, "And you, child, shall be called the prophet of
the Highest: for you shall go before the face of the Lord to prepare his
ways; To give knowledge of salvation to his people by the remission of their
sins, through the tender mercy of our God; whereby the dayspring from on
high has visited us, to give light to them that sit in darkness and in the
shadow of death, to guide our feet into the way of peace."
Joe: WOW! That is really positive. I can see
that a prophet is suppose to give the knowledge of salvation, the knowledge
of remissions of sins and to help others understand your mercy. Also a prophets
gives light and peace. WOW! And to think that most of the "prophets" I
have ever heard only told the bad things. They were "doomsayers".
God: Well Joe, I like to say that my prophets "stir-up, cheer-up and
Joe: Quite a few of the prophet of old did bring bad news.
God: That depends on what you consider "bad news."
Joe: I think of destruction as bad news.
God: Even when that "destruction" is necessary for reconstruction?
Joe: Ok, so reconstruction is usually for a good reason. But the prophets
also brought your judgement against people and nations. That was pretty tough.
God: It is Joe, if you hold the opinion that judgement is a bad thing. I
use judgement to correct that which is wrong.
Joe: WOW! That is a good thing God. Which brings me back to my original
question. Why didn't you keep my son from taking that first drink?
God: For the same reason Joe, that I allow false prophets. Remember in Jeremiah
14, I did not send them, yet they lied in my name. I did not command them
nor did I even speak to them, yet the people listened to them. I allowed
this so that some might learn from it. I allowed this so that some might
see the difference between true and false. How else will anyone learn to
know my spirit if I allow only that which is good or true?
Joe: But God, what does that have to do with my son? I love him and want
him to know you and love you.
God: You are right Joe, but don't you see how I let people make their
own choices and decisions? Your son knows me because you taught him about
me. You have set an example for him to follow, just like Jesus set an example
for people to follow.
Joe: You compare me to Jesus? I feel like I've failed. I mean, my son is
not following you and in fact, he is hurting many people that know and love
God: Joe, why do you feel like you failed?
Joe: Well, after all, if I set a good enough example then he would want
to be like me. He would do what I've taught him to do.
God: Didn't I send Jesus to set an example? And many choose to not follow
that example. Even those who call themselves mine?
Joe: I see God. What a relief. I am not the only one who failed.
God: Joe, I want you to know that to fail does not make you a failure. Failure happens only when one quits altogether. I want to call to your mind
a certain Edison. He had hundreds of failures when inventing the light bulb
before he succeeded. To fail is just another chance to succeed.
Joe: But God, I only have one son. And I am afraid it is too late for him.
God: Joe, believe in me. Believe that I am good. Believe that I love you and your son. Believe that I only want good for you both. Believe that there
is no darkness in me. I tell you the truth. I love you Joe. I love all man-kind.
Joe: So God, are you telling me that if I believe these things that you
will do what ever I ask? Referring back to John 14 that is.
God: The key word here is believe. Not just think, not just parrot, not
just hope, but to believe. And if you believe then you will say "not my will
Father but yours." It is my will that all men be saved and come to the knowledge
of the truth. (1 Timothy 2:4)
Joe: Back to my original question God. Why didn't you intervene?
God: Let me ask you a question Joe. Why did I choose Mary to be the mother
Joe: Because she was super good I guess.
God: Yes, she was good, but Joe, look at her attitude towards me. In Luke
1:37-38 when the angel speaks to her and tells her that with God nothing
shall be impossible. Mary said, "Behold the handmaid of the Lord; be
it unto me according to thy word." Notice her attitude? She submitted
her will to mine. She didn't say it would be too hard or that it was impossible.
Joe: I guess she could have said that it was impossible or that it would
have cost her too much in her personal life.
God: Why did I call King David a man after my own heart? After all he committed
adultery, lied and even killed.
Joe: I always thought it was because you chose him.
God: Again Joe, look at his attitude. As soon as I sent a prophet to point
out the problem, he repented and was sorry for what he did, but he did not
choose failure. He chose to seek my face and do that which pleased me.
Joe: God, I feel like I have always sought your approval.
God: Yes Joe, you have tried to gain my approval by the things that you
have done and the way you have acted. But, my son, you already have my approval.
All I have ever wanted is for you to love me and to recognize my love for
Joe: Oh God, don't you know that I love you?
God: How did I tell you that you show your love towards me?
Joe: By loving others.
Joe: I almost forgot...., by loving myself. I can't love others until I
love myself. I even memorized the scripture reference. It's Mark 12:30 & 31.
God: Now back to your original question. I want to look at a statement you
made about how you feel about yourself when you look at you son. You said
that you feel like you failed. Let me ask you, how can you help your son
if you feel like a failure?
Joe: I never thought about that, I see what you mean. I can only help him
succeed if I feel like I have succeeded. That was a lesson I learned when
I worked as a salesman. I could tell others about success but they would
only believe me I had been in their position and won a victory. Like the
time I sold more product than anyone one else in a given month. But God,
how does that apply to my son. I have never been an alcoholic.
God: You will have to look past the symptom to find the cause of the problem.
People with drug and alcohol problems are usually looking for an escape.
They feel like they are inadequate. The best way to teach them that they
are adequate is to tell them of my acceptance of them just like they are.
The problem is that religion teaches that they have to change before I can
love them. My Word teaches that I love them already, even before they become
reconciled to me. Romans 5:10 tells you, "For if, when we were enemies,
we were reconciled to God by the death of his Son, much more, being reconciled,
we shall be saved by his life."
Joe: WOW God, you reconciled us to yourself while we were yet enemies! So
if you can love us while we are yet your enemy we should be able to love
ourselves. Especially when we are trying so hard to please you.
God: That is correct. Yet you understand don't you Joe, that even if you
never try to please me I still love you.
Joe: Well, that is difficult to understand. I guess I feel like my love
is so limited that it's difficult to understand how you can love me.
God: That is exactly what I am trying to get across. This is the reason
you must accept my unconditional love. For then you can love yourself as
I love you. Just as you are, unconditionally.
Joe: I see that I will have to make a choice to do this. It is something
that I will have to remind myself of often.
God: Don't forget, I have given you the Holy Spirit to help you.
Joe: Good thing too. I will need that help. Thank you God. I sure do appreciate
you and all that you do for me.
God: Thank you Joe. I appreciate you too.
Joe: I need to spend some time practicing what you have taught me today.
I hope I love and accept myself by the next time we talk. Have a nice day
God: You too Joe. Remember, I love you.
Watch for the continuing collection..... Back to the Basics Series 'Who You
Talking To?' by Pamla Kay Wood To learn more about Promised Seed Ministries
or to order a tape and literature catalog, please write PO Box 4035 Alhambra,
CA 91803-7035 You can now download materials from PSM web sites: www.promiseed.com Email: firstname.lastname@example.org PSM audio