February 6th, 2016

Discernment Through Prayer

Yosemite in the rain, November 2015

NOTE: Today I’m posting a devotional I wrote for the River Church Women as they prepared for a retreat in February last year. Today & tomorrow they meet again for the IF: Gathering in PV with women from Rolling Hills Covenant Church. I wish I could be with them, but am enjoying a special time with my brother and his family in Georgia. – Kimberly


Father God, Holy Spirit of Jesus Christ; blessed Trinity you are a mystery, but I don’t want the idea of hearing your voice to stay so mysterious to me! As the Psalmist prayed “Open my eyes that I may see wonderful things in your law.” (Psalm 119:18) Today I ask that you will teach me from your Scriptures how I might better know your voice, and have insight from you through prayer.

SCRIPTURES. Meditatively read over these passages. Mull over them without rushing. Read it out loud so that you can hear yourself, and keep from distractions. What phrases or even a word captures your attention? What questions are raised? Is there new insights or reminders you have forgotten?

Call to me and I will answer you and tell you great and unsearchable things you do not know. -Jeremiah 33:3

Humble yourselves, therefore, under God’s mighty hand, that he may lift you up in due time. Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you. Be alert and of sober mind. Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour. Resist him, standing firm in the faith, because you know that the family of believers throughout the world is undergoing the same kind of sufferings. And the God of all grace, who called you to his eternal glory in Christ, after you have suffered a little while, will himself restore you and make you strong, firm and steadfast. To him be the power for ever and ever. Amen. -1 Peter 5:6-11

In John chapter 10, Jesus said,

11 “I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd lays down his life for the sheep.

14 “I am the good shepherd; I know my sheep and my sheep know me— 15 just as the Father knows me and I know the Father—and I lay down my life for the sheep.

PRAYER. If you are in a place where you can, pray this aloud.


It is a beautiful picture of care and attention to think of you as a shepherd to me. You are good; so good that in this passage you didn’t call us “dumb sheep” though that’s what we are some times! Thank you that you don’t let my mistakes define me.

You know me so well, you can anticipate what my needs are. You want to keep me safe from harm. I also want to know you like a sheep knows her master. I want to know your voice, and ask for more discernment in this. I know it is your will, so I can pray that with confidence.

Almighty God, Holy Spirit, Jesus my Savior, blessed Trinity. I’m not quite sure how it works, but I do know, your voice is kind, and gentle, loving, and firm. You call out what is wrong in me without harshness.

You would never cause me to feel like a hopeless case, or make me believe that I deserve to live in shame or have done something unforgiveable. When I hear that kind of a voice in my head (and I hear it a LOT!) I know it isn’t you, but your Enemy the Devil who is like a predatory animal wanting to devour me!  I refuse to listen to his accusations, and choose only to listen to you. I will be alert and sober. I humbly give you my cares, and trust you are working all things out for good in my life, even if sometimes life doesn’t make sense to me.

When you lived upon the earth, you showed us what it looked like to walk in communion with the Father. You were sure that the Father knew you, and you also knew your Father and could sense his will. You were so united in Spirit as you made decisions each day. At that time you were made of flesh, and he was unseen, and yet you could know one another. I desire that too. You said that like a shepherd with his sheep, I will know your voice. I want to grow in my ability to hear you and discern your voice from my own thoughts, self-talk, or any ways the Enemy is tricking me. I admit there is so much “static” as I try to tune in to your voice.


Show me Lord what might be standing in the way of having this type of communion with you.

Where have I sinned? I am listening. [Wait. Listen.]

Where have I believed lies? What false beliefs keep me from hearing you? [Wait. Listen.]

What do you want to say to me now?

SHARE. If you have had some revelation today, please share it with someone else! Let’s rejoice with one another as we receive insight from God in our pursuit of him!

AND If you feel like you met with a stonewall and silence as you prayed through this, PLEASE share with someone whom you know will pray with you to break through whatever is keeping you from the joy of knowing communion with God and discernment through prayer. James 5:16 tells us, Therefore confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you may be healed. The prayer of a righteous person is powerful and effective.” DO NOT believe that you are a hopeless case, or that you need to keep things hidden to be loved.

If you can’t identify sin and God is silent, still share with a friend who will pray with you and bring comfort. Sometimes God chooses to be silent.

If you don’t know who you can go to who will pray with you, ask God to bring to mind who would be best, and text her right away so that you don’t let the opportunity slip away.


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