Recently I was having a conversation with our Bishop and he suddenly stopped right in the middle of our conversation to ask me, "So, what is God saying to you these days?"
His question threw me for a total loop because it came right out of nowhere in relation to what we were talking about at the time. It is the kind of question a person feels she should have a complete, coherent, incredibly "super spiritual hero giant" kind of answer for, but no answer formed in my brain nor came out my mouth. Instead I sat in my comfy chair gaping at him like a chubby fish.
I was so stunned to have absolutely nothing to say by way of an answer that I couldn't think at all. The room turned kind of whitish, my vision blurred and the sound of rushing wind filled my ears.....my usual panic attack kind of reaction.
Right now I can't remember what kind of an answer I gave him; how I fudged on a direct answer to his direct question. I doubt I had him fooled for a second into thinking I have been consciously hearing from God's Holy Spirit in the past while, but he didn't press me to say more. That much I remember, bless him.
It isn't like me to have no answer to any question, particularly a question pertaining to God and life in the Spirit. I could have at least told our Bishop something like "I'm not sure" or "I don't know". Couldn't even get either of those lame-o answers to come out between my lips.
However I have wondered ever since just exactly what God is saying to me these days about life. The question should not have been so difficult to answer. Usually I am quite conscious of God and of the circumstances of my life that reveal his will and his love for me; I hear his voice in the voice of others in the church; I read the Bible and understand some of its principles for living as a Christian. This time, when asked that direct question, I had absolutely no clue how to answer. It really shook me up.
I have no doubt God is trying to talk to me about something. He usually is. His Spirit is good about nudging me to make changes in my own life and attitudes, to assist someone in need, to pray, to give, to worship and praise Him for all manner of reasons or for no other reason at all other than he is worthy. Lately though I am drawing a blank on the "conversational" side of our relationship. I have peace when I pray so I suppose that is a good thing. I feel calm about life. I catch myself sometimes seeing a need to apologize about something, or to encourage someone else, or to serve in our church in some new small way. Those are all good things, but I wonder what else, if anything, my Bishop's question was meant to stir up. Guess I will find out as I continue to listen more closely to that still, small voice of God. I admit sometimes he has to shout to fully receive my attention. Hope he hasn't had to resort to beating his fists against the pearly gates in his frustrated attempts to shake me out of an apparent spiritual stupor.
After the ordinations last weekend I was sitting eating my lunch with our Bishop and as we ate and chatted about the service he suddenly stopped and asked me what saint he had talked about in his sermon. Ahhhh....fortunately for me I heard the voice of God whispering into my ear this time and I boldly told him it was St. Henry of Finland. Whew...dodged a bullet there, thank you Lord. I WAS listening to the sermon. Hopefully I am redeemed in my Bishop's sharp eyes.....hopefully....my Bishop is very spiritually astute. He unnerves me that way. I shouldn't be unnerved by this gentle soul who wants only the best for all under his spiritual care....but I was after his question about what God is saying to me these days.
Okay God, I'm listening........please prepare me for whatever it is I need to hear and obey.