In my last blog I explained how we need to have access to people we can imitate in order to see what becoming more Christlike might actually look like for us. We all need living examples.
In this final blog of this series, I want to share two simple questions that I learned, which have significantly changed my own discipleship walk and which I believe could change yours, too.
I first read about these questions when I was living in England. They were in a book written by an Anglican vicar named Mike Breen. Mike had been leading one of the largest and fasting growing churches in Europe at the turn of the Millennium, consisting of a mostly post-modern generation under the age of 40. I confess that at the time I first read Mike’s book, the questions did not really make an impact on me. That’s because I received them simply as information from a book.
Fast forward several years and I found myself in a yearlong coaching relationship with someone who had been discipled by one of Mike’s leaders.
Each time we met, regardless of what the content of our time together looked like, he would ask me the same two questions.
1) What is God saying to you?
2) What are you going to do about it?
They don’t sound like particularly potent questions. They are certainly not new questions. Listening to God is not a new idea to me! I’ve been doing it for over 20 years. We train lots of people in our church to hear God’s voice. We call it being prophetic (but I’d like to suggest we mostly need to hear His voice for ourselves).
Being obedient is not new either. I’ve been trying to do that for more than 20 years as well, and we have many people in our church who inspire me with their obedience to what God has told them to do.
But making the practice of asking these questions part of my daily discipleship has helped me significantly to be a disciple and as I disciple others.
I began to realize that they sum up what it means to follow God daily, and you can stumble upon this basic premise in Scripture again and again.
God speaks… His people respond.
“Hear, O Israel… be careful to obey” (Deut. 6:3).
“Now this is what the God of Israel says… now choose this day who you will serve” (Josh. 24:2,15).
“Anyone who hears [Jesus’] words and puts them into practice is like the wise man who build his house on the rock” (Matt. 7:24).
“My sheep hear my voice… and they follow me” (John 10.27).
We can sit in church and listen to sermons (or download them on podcasts).
We can read the Bible and even read books about the Bible and go to Bible studies.
We can have someone prophesy over us every week.
We can sit quietly in contemplative prayer or write in our prayer journal.
All good things, but until we actually acknowledge what the Holy Spirit is saying to us through it all and make a conscious decision to respond to what He is saying to us, we will remain unchanged! These questions activate us to participate in what the Holy Spirit wants to do in us.
The reason these two questions impacted me this time around is because I had someone modeling for me what it meant to live that way, constantly paying attention to what Holy Spirit is saying AND challenging me to respond in obedience.
In my coach, I had a living example to imitate.
I challenge you to begin to ask these questions as a daily habit. Even multiple times during the day, in whatever situation you find yourself in. I believe that as we discern God speaking to us and we choose to respond in faith-filled obedience, we will see God’s Kingdom break into our own lives and wherever we find ourselves.
So far I’ve finished all my blogs in this series with a question for you. I guess you might have figured out that this time I’m going to leave you with two!
What is God saying to you?
What are you going to do about it?
“Today, if you hear his voice, do not harden you hearts…” (Psalm 95.7)