POWERFUL CONVERSATIONS WITH CHRIST
Dear Lord, please help me to relay what you’re showing me about conversations with you.
AN INTIMATE EXAMPLE
Dear child, please continue being transparent. Demonstrate for everyone what it’s like to have a conversation with me.
OK Lord. But I am just a broken vessel. I don’t know anything. And I am not worthy to teach your Christ followers anything special.
You don’t really believe that, do you?
No Lord. I do think that I am broken, but still need more brokenness. And I need that every day, as I sit with you. Your Word breaks me. Your presence breaks me. Your love breaks me. Seeing my character defects breaks me. Having to go to you for forgiveness breaks me. And, my wife breaks me. You gave me the perfect wife that does not put up with any of my crap.
And do you think you don’t have something special to say?
Lord, what you have shown me is special, and it has totally transformed my relationship with you. I do want to show others this, so it will transform their relationship with you as well. Buddy keeps asking me what is it that I can do, that only I can do, to make a contribution to your Kingdom. Maybe this is it: Being totally transparent and vulnerable in my prayer time with you, for the whole world to see, so that they can get a vision for the kind of conversations they, too, can have with you.
Dear child, this is true. All this is true. I want you to faithfully and consistently serve me all the days you have left on earth, as I want all my children to do. And, I do what you to be transparent.
Yes, Lord Jesus. That consistency is what I have lacked. I have failed you many times, and I don’t want to fail you every again. The truth: If you can use me, you can use anyone. We just have to fully surrender to you and your Holy Spirit.
Being consistent with your daily times of prayer, when you first start your day, and when you end your day, and several times during the day, is the right behaviors that will keep you consistent.
Yes, Lord. Now, with your permission, I will explain to my readers what we are talking about.
SUPER-CHARGED PRAYER TIME
All, as you know: Prayer is a powerful means of communication for followers of Christ Jesus. Two-way prayer is an intimate and transformative practice that involves engaging in a dialogue with Jesus Christ, allowing us to receive guidance, comfort, and wisdom directly from Him. Please allow me to explore the essence of two-way prayer and how it can deepen our relationship with Christ Jesus, enabling us to experience His love and grace in a profound way.
Two-way prayer is what God wants from all of us. Prayer used to be very boring for me, and I could not pray for more than a few minutes at a time without getting super bored. After all, God knows everything, so why should I tell Him Who Knows All? But, prayer is not merely supposed to be one-sided conversation. God wants a dynamic interaction with Him. He desires to communicate with His followers on a DAILY basis, multiple times a day. It involves both speaking to God through prayer and creating space for listening to His response. By opening our hearts and minds to Christ Jesus, we invite Him to speak to us through various means, such as Scripture, thoughts, impressions, and the promptings of the Holy Spirit.
ASKING THE WRONG QUESTION
The wrong question: “Did you have a daily quiet time today?” or “Do you have a daily quiet time?” The right question for a Christ-follower: “How many quiet times have you had today, where there was a two-way dialogue with Christ?” It is called two-way prayer.
THE FIRST CRITERIA
Two-way prayer requires a personal relationship with Christ Jesus. Just as any relationship requires time, effort, and openness, our connection with Jesus also demands the same. Spending regular time in prayer, studying the Word, and seeking His presence help foster a deep and meaningful relationship. As we grow closer to Him, we become more attuned to His “voice” and better equipped to discern His guidance. Anyone can learn how to do this. But the first step: Know Christ; Second step: Start trying to LISTEN better to Him and what He is saying to you.
THE KEY IS LISTENING
In the hustle and bustle of daily life, it can be challenging to quiet our minds and truly listen to Christ Jesus. However, creating a sacred space for prayer, free from distractions, can help us attune ourselves to His voice. It is important to approach Him with an open heart, surrendering our preconceived notions and desires, allowing His will to take precedence. Sometimes, His response may be immediate, while at other times, it may come gradually. Patience, trust, and discernment are key in this process. But, if we don’t believe we can ever “hear” him, with an individual message for us, we are defeated by the enemy, Satan and his demons, before we ever try.
DISCERNING THE VOICE OF CHRIST JESUS
Discerning the voice of Christ Jesus requires practice and spiritual discernment. His voice aligns with His teachings, characterized by love, truth, and righteousness. Regularly immersing ourselves in Scripture helps us recognize His voice more clearly, as it provides a solid foundation of His character and teachings. Seeking wise counsel from mature believers can also provide guidance and confirmation in discerning His voice.
GROWING IN FAITY AND GAINING TRANSFORMATION
Engaging in two-way prayer with Christ Jesus is not solely about seeking answers to our immediate needs. It is a transformative journey that deepens our faith, strengthens our reliance on Him, and shapes us into His likeness. As we surrender our will to His, we experience a profound sense of peace, joy, and purpose. His guidance may challenge us, refine our character, and lead us on paths we never imagined, ultimately drawing us closer to Him.
Two-way prayer with Christ Jesus is a sacred practice that allows us to intimately connect with our Savior. Through this form of prayer, we can experience His love, guidance, and transformative power in our lives. Cultivating a relationship with Him, creating space for listening, and discerning His voice are essential in this journey. As we grow in faith and surrender to His will, we discover the immeasurable blessings and joy that come from communing with Christ Jesus through two-way prayer.
Here are some supporting Scriptures from the New Testament (NIV) that highlight the significance of two-way prayer and our relationship with Christ Jesus:
Speaking to God in Prayer:
• “Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God.” (Philippians 4:6)
• “This is the confidence we have in approaching God: that if we ask anything according to his will, he hears us.” (1 John 5:14)
Listening to Christ Jesus:
• “My sheep listen to my voice; I know them, and they follow me.” (John 10:27)
• “Call to me and I will answer you and tell you great and unsearchable things you do not know.” (Jeremiah 33:3)
Discerning the Voice of Christ Jesus:
• “My dear friends, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits to see whether they are from God, because many false prophets have gone out into the world.” (1 John 4:1)
• “For the word of God is alive and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart.” (Hebrews 4:12)
Growing in Faith and Transformation:
• “And we all, who with unveiled faces contemplate the Lord’s glory, are being transformed into his image with ever-increasing glory, which comes from the Lord, who is the Spirit.” (2 Corinthians 3:18)
• “Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, the new creation has come: The old has gone, the new is here!” (2 Corinthians 5:17)
Scriptures provides a foundation for two-way prayer and our relationship with Christ Jesus. Incorporating them into your study and reflection can enhance your understanding and practice of this intimate form of communication with Him.
While two-way prayer with Christ Jesus can be a transformative and enriching practice, it is important to be aware of potential dangers or pitfalls that one might encounter. Here are a few considerations:
Our own desires, biases, and thoughts can sometimes cloud our ability to discern the voice of Christ Jesus accurately. It is crucial to approach two-way prayer with humility, surrendering our own agendas and being open to God’s leading. Regularly seeking guidance from mature believers and aligning our experiences with Scripture can help guard against self-deception.
Misinterpretation: The process of discerning God’s voice requires spiritual discernment and wisdom. It is possible to misinterpret or misapply the impressions or messages we receive during two-way prayer. This is why it is essential to compare what we perceive with the teachings of Scripture and seek guidance from trusted spiritual mentors to gain a broader perspective.
Confusion with Personal Desires: Sometimes, our own desires and wishes can subtly influence our perception of God’s voice during two-way prayer. We must be cautious not to mistake our personal preferences or ambitions as divine guidance. It is crucial to surrender our will and desires to God, seeking His guidance and aligning ourselves with His purpose.
Spiritual Warfare: Engaging in deep spiritual practices like two-way prayer can attract spiritual opposition. The enemy may attempt to deceive, discourage, or distract us from the true voice of Christ Jesus. Being aware of spiritual warfare, staying rooted in God’s Word, and relying on the power of the Holy Spirit can help protect us from these attacks.
Neglecting Other Means of Seeking God: While two-way prayer is a powerful form of communication with Christ Jesus, it is important not to neglect other spiritual disciplines. Reading and studying Scripture, participating in corporate worship, and engaging in community and fellowship with other believers are essential for spiritual growth.
By being aware of these potential dangers and pitfalls, we can approach two-way prayer with Christ Jesus with discernment, humility, and a reliance on God’s guidance. Remember, it is through a well-rounded and balanced spiritual journey that we can experience the fullness of our relationship with Him.
My friends, please try, and don’t give up. You can and will get good at having true conversations with Christ, if you will only be open to doing so, and to practice. The worst that will happen is that you will get closer to the Lord of the Universe, your Savior, Jesus Christ, may He come now. Amen.
Your aspiring servant,
9 June 2023
POSTSCRIPT: Dear friends, if this daily, transparent conversation with God blesses you, please go to www.SOLIDpastors.org, where you will find these posted, and a repository of all, in English (Spanish is coming soon). If you ever want to chat, reach out at Daniel@SOLIDpastors.org. My Christ bless you richly as you have your own intimate, daily Conversations with God