Preparing for What’s Next – Final Stretch

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Have you seen the viral video of the comedian Robyn Schall reading her 2020 goals laughing hysterically? While some of us may be laughing, or crying, right alongside her, it underscores a truth that 2020 has brought into sharp focus. We have no idea what the future holds—we don’t know what next week, next month, or next year will bring. None of us could have predicted the events of 2020, but what is also true is that God is never surprised. Oregon Campus Pastor Andy Rectenwald spoke this weekend about how we can prepare for whatever comes next by reading the Bible, focusing on God, and listening to him.

But how can we hear from God?

Andy pointed out that we primarily hear from God by reading the Bible. Wait…hear from God by reading? Yes, it’s true! We can hear from God today through reading the Bible (and since you are reading the LIO today, we’re pretty confident you want to hear from Him), but we may find ourselves in one of three groups:

  1. Those who have no familiarity with the Bible yet
  2. Those who want to read the Bible, but struggle to
  3. Those who engage with the Bible on a regular, fulfilling basis.

It doesn’t matter which category you belong to—we are so glad you are here, and even if you regularly engage with the Bible, this is important to remember – we are confident you can and will experience God personally through His word.

The bottom line for the weekend message is, “If God is speaking personally, we should listen personally.” God speaks personally. Why? Because he is personal. I believe God desires to communicate with us even more than we desire to communicate with him. Andy shared a simple, yet powerful prayer that we can say before reading our Bible: “God, speak to me.”

2 Timothy 3:16-17 (NIV)
6 All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, 17 so that the servant of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work.

In our heart, when we are open to hearing from him, when we are faithful and open to whatever he wants to say to us, we will hear from him. We cannot predict what lies ahead—only God knows the future. But we can know God personally by reading his Word and be prepared for whatever comes next.

How are you preparing for what’s next?
Are you listening for God to speak to you?
Are you setting aside distractions to hear from God?

Next Steps:
Begin reading God’s word. Set a reminder to read the LIO and then read the chapter the verse came from each day. More than 1 verse used? Just pick one and use a paper Bible, an online Bible, a Bible app, or an audio Bible to dive in!

Already been reading the Bible for awhile? Try listening to a chapter using an audio Bible while reading along with it.

Dear God, you are the source of all wisdom. Thank you for wanting to speak to me personally. Give me the desire to consistently read your Word. Help me to set aside distractions and listen for you personally. God, speak to me. I really want to hear your voice so I’m prepared for what comes next. Amen.

This post was written by Gaye Winterfield, a regular contributor to the LivingitOut.

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