Yes! No! Wait!
by Debbie Watson
In "About Saints" you got to meet some remarkable people who became great at doing what God wanted them to do and had amazing lives. In "Banking with Jesus" you were told that we can all do what God wants us to do. All of us have access to graces that help us to live our life the way God wants us to. In "Walking the Talk" we saw how God loves action. He sent Jesus to show us what we need to do.
God wants us to live a life of action for the love of Him and the love of our brothers and sisters - the people He created. He has chosen a road for us. Traveling along this road gives us the joy of knowing that we are using everything that God has given us to His glory. This is also the road that will lead us to our greatest prize - life everlasting in an unimaginably great place called "Heaven".
How do we discover the right road? Many of my friends say that the problem about asking God is that He doesn't talk back.
Is there some trick or some magic that helps us hear the voice of God? The answer is so simple that most of us don't believe it. You just need to listen!
There are some explanations for why we don't hear God's answer. The most obvious one is that we are never before Him long enough or quiet enough to hear His answer. God speaks very quietly. He is not into shouting! You have to train yourself to 'hear' Him.
Have a look at the story of Elijah (1 Kings 19.11-12) in the Old Testament. Elijah went looking for the Lord. There was a roaring wind, but the Lord was not in it. Then there was an earthquake, but the Lord wasn't in it. Then there was a fire, but the Lord wasn't in it. Finally, there came a whispering breeze and the Lord's voice was in it!
Have you ever wondered why God so often spoke to His prophets in dreams? It is probably because when we are asleep it is the only time that our minds and voices are quiet enough for us to hear the voice of God. We always seem to be in a great hurry.
There is still another reason why we don't hear God's answer. Often we are looking for it in the wrong place. We expect God to answer us directly like in a letter or phone call.
God, however, likes to use messengers. When His children weren't listening, He sent prophets (quite often after talking to them in their dreams!). When He told Mary that she was going to have Jesus (and this was a really important message!), He used an angel. When His chosen people were still deaf to His commandments, He sent His Son. God never gives up!
So, you see, you can expect God to answer you through someone else. Most likely this person is a friend or a family member but could also be a stranger.
The answer could even come through something that happens in your life or in the life of someone else or still through something you read or see. At times, it is through that little voice in your head that we call 'conscience'. Everything is at God's disposal and He makes use of many different instruments to answer you.
There is only one certainty: He does answer! The answer can be "Yes", "No" or "Wait". But you need to have the lines of communication open to hear.
Finally, sometimes we don't 'hear' God's answer because it is the answer we don't want to hear, so we chuck it out and pretend that He hasn't answered. And then we say, we don't know what to do, when half of us does know, but the other half doesn't want to or is afraid to do what must be done. This is when our faith comes to play. We have to believe that God loves us and wants us to be happy.
Jesus tells us in the Bible that a father will not give his child stones to eat when he asks for food (Mt 7.8-11). God loves us much more than any earthly father. He wants to give us what is absolutely best for us. What is more, He can give it to us because everything belongs to Him. The only step we need to take is to truly believe that anything He chooses for us is far better than anything we can choose for ourselves, because He loves us more than even we love ourselves.
Let me tell you about an amazing fellow called Pier Giorgio Frassati who listened to God and walked on the right road. He is often called the saint for the youth of the third millennium.
Pier Giorgio was a popular young man who loved sport, music and art and he had many friends. He became a friend of God at an early age. When he was just 18 years old, he joined the St. Vincent de Paul Society to serve the sick and the needy. He decided to study mining engineering so that he could serve Christ better among the miners.
Pier Giorgio's family was rich but his father was very careful with his money. His father gave him bus money but he gave it all to the poor and walked home from college. Although he was a good student, he did many other things. He joined the Catholic Student Federation and the Popular Party, a political organization that promoted the Catholic Church's teachings. At graduation his father gave him the choice of money or a car. He chose money and gave it to the poor. One day when he was in Berlin with his father in the winter, he gave a poor shivering man his coat. His father scolded him but he answered "But you see, papa, it is cold".
When at the age of 24 he was dying, he called his sister to tell her of all the families he had quietly been helping to make sure that they weren't abandoned. Then he died. His family expected all his friends and some important people from the town to be at his funeral because his father was important, but they were surprised when the streets of the city were lined with thousands of mourners. Those who mourned his death the most were the poor and the needy that he had served and helped for 7 years without anyone knowing. On 20 May 1990, Pope John Paul II beatified Pier Giorgio.
Pier Giorgio loved God, found his road and traveled along it in great joy. He was an "action man" who served God through the people around him. God calls us all. Let's listen!
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