You hear people say, “The Lord told me,” and you think, “How do they know for sure? And why doesn’t God speak more clearly to me?” What’s the deal? Perhaps a quick look at Jesus’ post-resurrection conversations will help.
Sunday morning. “Mary stood weeping outside the tomb” (John 20:11-17). When someone is in a complete meltdown, they usually can’t “hear” anyone—they’re in so much pain. Has that ever happened to you? When your emotions are on full throttle, sometimes the Lord just says, “Hey you (your name).”
Sunday afternoon. On a walk to Emmaus, Cleopas and his companion were jabbering away about Jesus’ crucifixion (Luke 24:13-32). Have you ever been so engrossed in a conversation that you were oblivious to everyone else on the trail? Sometimes your eyes are “kept from recognizing him”—but he’s still speaking to you through Scripture. You just don’t realize it until later.
Sunday night. The disciples had locked the doors (John 20:19-23). Then suddenly Jesus stands in the middle of the room and says, “Peace be with you” (yup, the original passing-of-the-peace thingy). He breathes on them and says, “Receive the Holy Spirit.” Sometimes Jesus “speaks” by filling us with peace and the Spirit’s power.
8 days later. Everyone calls the poor guy, Doubting Thomas (John 20:24-29). But he’s not alone. We, too, can hear his voice and doubt—and demand a visible sign. Sometimes Jesus will challenge you with: “Blessed are those who have not seen and yet have believed.”
Sometime later. During the disciple’s morning work shift, Jesus interrupts them to get their attention (John 21:1-23). Sometimes you’ll hear his tender, merciful voice asking you a lot of questions!
Just before Jesus ascended. Apparently, sometimes Jesus simply says, “wait” before he sends you on an assignment (Acts 1:6-11).