A Lesson Gained in Not Listening to His Prompting
By Alexis A. Goring
Hear Him Louder Essay Series: Alexis's Story
The first of many lessons about listening to God happened at the beginning of my Introduction to Creative Writing class. Our professor gave us a question to answer, asking us to write about what we believe and why, and then we would share our responses.
As I put my pen to paper, the words flowed. I wrote about why I believe in God and explained how I see Him everywhere through nature, kindness from other humans, faith-based music, and reading the Bible.
Halfway through, I paused.
I thought, “This is a Christian college. Everyone here already knows about God and believes in Him. If I share this writing here, I’ll be preaching to the choir. I cannot write this.”
I scratched out what I wrote, turned the page, and began writing about art. When it was my turn to share, I spoke about believing in the beauty of art and how it is evident everywhere: in the way chefs cook their food, bakers create lovely cakes for special occasions, architects imagine and build beautiful buildings, and even in the way we decorate our dorm rooms.
When I finished, nobody said a word.
Then the next person shared his writing. He still stands out in my mind today. His eyes were wide and serious as he explained, “I believe in Darwinism. I believe we all evolved from monkeys.”
Not a single person in the classroom had a response. Here we were, at a Christian college, and this student didn't believe in our Creator?
The teacher called on the next person to share and continued facilitating our class as if nothing was amiss. But in my head, my thoughts were loud. I berated myself for not speaking up.
What if I had written and shared the words God gave me in my first essay? What if the class discussion would have been different? What if a seed would have been planted?
My heart was crushed. Had I missed this opportunity as a way to introduce him to Jesus Christ and show him how much God loves him? Because of assumptions I had made about my classmates and my Christian college?
I never saw that young man on campus again. I don’t know if he dropped out. I don’t know if he met people who told him about Jesus. I don’t know if he heard how much the Creator of the universe loves him.
But I do know that God is good. I know that God will orchestrate for this young man many other opportunities to learn more about Jesus. And I know that God will send others to speak faith into his life.
I'm sharing this with you because it still bothers me. Because of that memory, I will forever be mindful of listening for His promptings, without hesitation or reasoning my way out, when He tells me to do something.
Friend, don’t do what I did in that creative writing class. If you feel God impressing upon you something that will help people see how loved they are by Jesus, please don’t hesitate.
You never know how much someone needs to hear the words God gives you.
Photo credit: Wix media
The Hear Him Louder Essay Series is a guest writer series where God's daughters share their stories of hearing God’s whispers in their every day. It’s meant to serve as an encouragement for the times when God feels far and seems quiet. When we read each other’s stories of how He meets us, it reminds and reassures us that He is near. May this series be an invitation for us to listen for His voice together.
Don't miss any posts in this series! Subscribe to receive notifications for each new essay, posted every other Thursday. When you subscribe, you'll receive a link to a FREE five-day devotional (45 beautiful pages!) called, “Closer: Five Days to Hearing God Louder.” Each day features teaching on one posture and a guided journaling section to help us practice taking steps toward hearing God louder in our every day.
Learn more about each of these five postures:
1 | Seek: If I Seek God, Will I Really Find Him?
2 | Know: Will God Speak, Even to Me?
3 | Expect: Can I Expect to Hear God?
4 | Listen: How Do I Listen for God?
5 | Connect: Is God Really Right Here?
New to this series? Check out the rest of the series!
Interested in contributing to the Hear Him Louder Essay Series? The call for submissions opens twice a year. To submit an essay outside of those windows, contact me.
Alexis A. Goring is a passionate writer with a degree in Print Journalism and an MFA in Creative Writing. She is an author of Inspirational Romance fiction stories and devotionals.
Alexis loves following Jesus Christ and spending time enjoying delicious food with her loved ones.
She’s the founder of the “God is Love” blog, where she teaches people about the God who loves humankind with all of His Heart. She enjoys photography as a hobby.