How?

Isaiah 54:17 “No weapon that is formed against you will prosper; And every tongue that accuses you in judgment you will condemn. This is the heritage of the servants of the LORD, And their vindication is from Me,”

It’s really crazy to remember that three and a half years ago I had a general idea of how my days would flow. Painfully, I admit my time with Heavenly Dad was still the first thing I did in the morning, often before rolling out of bed, but it was done out of obedience and a fear of what would happened if I didn’t. I remember the anxiety: what would happen if I didn’t “follow His rules” or “toe His line?” I didn’t actually realize I was fearing this, of course, I thought that was the way everyone felt. I thought this was the”fine print” found at the bottom of the definition of the term,”Salvation.”

Things are very different now. I look forward to my morning chat with HD as I am open to what He has to say to me and the direction He gives for my day. The major change in my life is that I go through each day listening and taking in what He has for me. I talk to Him all day, mostly on behalf of others (I don’t try to fix anybody but lift them up to the One who can), but often it’s just quick “Thank you!”s or “You are so cool!”s.

What I long and look forward to, however, is my coffee time with Him—I never had that before. To be honest, I probably would have made excuses saying I could not “squeeze” it in because of all of my other responsibilities, volunteering, and what not. You know, “making the world a better place” using my own efforts. Well, hu-rah for me. Yes, that was sarcasm.

All week long I anticipate, long for my coffee time with Dad. It’s like waiting to have dinner with the most important or impressive person you know: The president of the United States, the head of a recording studio, the top professional athlete in the world, or maybe the CEO of a major tech corporation. You wouldn’t want that time with them to be rushed and you would hang on every word that came out of their mouths. You could ask any question and know that answer was meant just for you, as it was a personal conversation.

So it is with Heavenly Dad. I need several uninterrupted hours. I want to listen, Talk, and give Him time to answer.

Dani Johnson’s son asked her how she knew she was hearing God. She explained that it’s the inner voice that tells you to do what you know is right. She also explained that the more time you spend with Him, the louder the voice.

The instruction book also reminds us that every thought, Dream, way we think or act that is from Him, can be backed up in the Bible. That puts my mind at ease knowing if I’m PMSing and feeling kinda off, if my thoughts and ways aren’t lining up, I remind myself,”Girl! It must be fatigue or hormones!” Lol. Just being honest.

How do I come to a place of being ready to have coffee time? Everyone is different. I have a friend who exercises and sorta loathes it to the point that they are praying for it to end. They told me they have the best prayer times after a work out.

For me it starts with the peace that I have this time cut out specifically for Dad. I have my regular quiet time then listen to music, especially videos about the stories behind the songs. Phrases or certain lyrics grab me and I know that is part of the answer to my questions I am preparing to ask.

This morning the sentence that caught my attention was,”We all have a story written on our hearts that only we can sing,” from Bethel Music. One of the songs from The Upper Room was Isaiah 54:17 and they kept repeating, “No weapon formed against me will prosper (because You are for me).” I heard them say weapons look different and come at us every day. They will not win against us because we, the kids of Heavenly Dad, are protected by Him. You thought mama bears were dangerous protecting their young? Can you imagine the wrath of Heavenly Dad?!?! Pity the fool who tries to mess with one of HIS kids!

How those two work together for me is to watch for the battles whether they last a moment, a year or a lifetime. I see Heavenly Dad fighting for me and the miraculous, inexplainable endings that only He could orchestrate. These situations are near and dear to MY heart and my responsibility to sing/tell others. Then they can see excitement and feel how real Heavenly Dad’s love and protection is. No one else can pass along my first person story the way I can because it happened to ME!

When I have enough random answers to questions yet unasked, I grab my, now naked, thermal mug (it was once copper, then petinad, now completely stainless steel. The bottom rim is broken, has fallen off and been lost for months at a time only to show up after the snow has melted or riding in a vehicle with someone who found it in their cup holder but hadn’t thrown it away because they thought it might be important. This mug is at least seven years old but holds heat for at least 2 hours—longer than the actual coffee!) and head to the living room for time with Dad.

I then scooch the beautiful wooden bench with pipe legs (a house warming gift from Grace and Rod) next to the sofa, coaster in place, and position my mug. A nest of pillows on the sofa, a blanket (because 64° is sort of chilly when I’m not moving) and I am ready for my coffee time.

I grab my phone, and start going through the verses of the day—for the whole week, sometimes two—sent to me by different websites. I continue to be in awe as I see the message that all comes together, one verse at a time.

Sometimes, The verses remind me of something I’ve heard in the past and I want to look up a story I grew up with as a child. The problem is, when you were a kid, they don’t tell you where the dramas take place in the Bible. Thankfully, we now have a Google search! I asked Siri and the mystery is solved in seconds!

My final step is a lot different than other people’s. That’s because my walk is different than everyone else’s along with my relationship with Him. They’re personal. He created you to have a relationship with him that is unlike any other, and me as well.

I write :-). The songs, the scripture, the quiet time, it all falls into place. Questions come up and the answers are already there. When I write, it puts them all together into a story.

You are the fly on my wall. I honestly have no reason or idea why today’s blog contained what it did. When I begin my time with Heavenly Dad, sometimes I think I know where I’m going to start, but the destination unfolds like a beautiful but cryptic flower, one petal at a time.

I’m always excited to discover how the story is going to end.

He wanted me to finish with this: even if I am spending lots of time with Him, like Dani Johnson explained, the volume of the world can drown out Heavenly Dad’s voice unless I take the time to listen for it. Time…

Until next time: Blessings!

Author: Tracy Cook

Widowed one week before our 27th wedding anniversary, Heavenly Dad continues to carry me, now blessing me with a second chance for love.

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