We all want to hear God speak to us. We long to hear that voice that touches the deepest parts of us, captures our attention and leaves us in profound reflection. We all long for direction, guidance, encouragement, insight into our lives that is divinely inspired. Humans have listened attentively for the voice of God from the earliest of times. Some of the ancients described God speaking in thunderous ways, as befitting the most powerful being in the known cosmos. The Bible contains stories of God speaking, sometimes in what seems an audible voice, sometimes in the sound of thunder and sometimes in the “still, small voice” that defies human hearing but resonates deeply in the heart. The prophets often had a “word from the Lord” that challenged the social order, the ruling nobility or unjust and immoral business practices. God speaks in many ways, to make sure we are able to listen faithfully.

I also think that God can speak through our discontent. God may help us to be unsettled about conditions in the world or how we are not living up to our potential or we are doing work that is not our passion. Here God’s voice stops us, helps us to reconsider our current course.

Sunday, we’ll read the Bible story where Jacob has a dream about a ladder, filled with angels ascending and descending. God is so near, never far away. Sunday, we worship to quiet our hearts, cease our busy schedules and receive the presence and message of God that can move our entire being.

Dr. Dave Summers, Senior Pastor
Paradise Valley United Methodist Church
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During Lent we are doing a worship series on the Gifts of the Dark Wood and exploring how times of difficulty and failure become places that reveal insights to us about ourselves and our beliefs. Instead of living our lives trying to avoid the dark places, we learn to see and receive their gifts to us. Uncertainty abounds in our world, given the realities of economics, politics, terrorism, and our increasingly fragile planet. We want to cultivate a strong and durable trust in God as we face uncertain times. We want to discover a way to receive and understand the insights from uncertainty as life unfolds for us. Join us Sunday for our Lenten worship series and the gifts that will come to each of us as we journey to the cross and Easter Sunday.

Read More about Gifts of the Dark Wood and the Lenten season at PVUMC.

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