A young mom from Toronto recently sent me an email about a surprising interaction with her daughters after they began using MYSTART Journals. If there is one unique feature about the journal it would be that children take a few minutes. 2-5 are suggested, to listen to the Lord’s voice, as young Samuel did when he was a boy. It’s called “Rest” and is a time for us to be quiet and listen to what God is speaking. Here’s what the young mom wrote:
“As we were going through the ‘rest’ section, we decided 3 minutes would be a good start. When the timer went off, Becca, who is 10, groaned and grabbed the timer exclaiming, ‘Nooooo, it was sooo peaceful. Let’s do it again!’ And she proceeded to put another 2 minutes on the timer. Tara, age 8, happily agreed and bowed her head to spend more time with God. I was tearing up when Becca set the additional minutes.
“After the exercise, I asked Becca how she ended the phrase, ‘God is my .....’ I was tickled pink when she said, ‘HERO’. At the close of the devotional Tara declared, ‘Mom, this book really works!!”
Here’s the interesting part. The girls’ mom told me the week before they began their journals, both girls were asking whether God speaks and why He didn’t speak to them as He did to people in the Bible. She told them God speaks in whispers more often than in the thunder. Oh, the amazing timing for two little girls from Toronto!
There is a family from Ohio who have family night every Friday night and they light a Sabbath candle to begin the evening and share a MYSTART Journal entry together. Some of their thoughts:
Aaron, age 10: “I like to hear what everyone hears when they read the verses.”
Kelcie, age 14: “It’s a good way to get connected with God in the Word and with our family.”
Dad: “We can all do the same devotional and God speaks to us each at our own level. Thanks for not dumbing it down for adults!”
After the “rest” time, each person shares what God told them during their quiet time. Ah, these are precious:
Darren, age 10, wrote, “Dear God, please help me face my fears.” And after the “rest” time he said, “God is my protector!”
Chloe, age 12, “God is my microphone! He speaks loudly for me to hear!”
Aaron, age 10, “God is my Watcher. He keeps his eyes on me and keeps me safe.”
Kelcie, age 14, “God is my director/conductor.” BTW, Kelcie was in her school musical presentation of “Beauty and the Beast” last weekend. What a “coincidence” that God spoke these words to her!
Jason, age 9, “God told me he loves me!” It was the big smile on Jason’s face that was very convincing.
Bec and I believe whole-heartedly that a generation can be in touch with the God who created them and who loves to speak to them. As I’m thinking about my own “rest” times with God and how hurried and restless I can become, I’m drawn into the joy of expecting God to speak as simply as He is speaking to my young friends.
Some of my recent thoughts:
• Listening promotes an awareness of His Presence. • Listening creates a hunger in me.
• Listening reflects a teachable spirit.
I believe God is listening for listeners and I am asking Him for a new capacity to hear.
The Hebrew word, Shema, appears 1,161 times in the scriptures and is translated "hear" in the Old Testament. Jesus said, “He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches.” I seriously doubt that Jesus put an age boundary on His listening statement. Go ahead, young friends, listen well. We want to hear what the Spirit is saying to the church through you!