Daily reading: 24 September
God will speak to you in different ways.
He saw the heaven opened and something like a large sheet coming down, being lowered to the ground by its four corners. In it were all kinds of four-footed creatures and reptiles and birds of the air.
- Acts 10, 11-12 New Revised Standard Version. Click here to read the King James Version
You might be thinking this is all starting to sound a bit far-fetched!
Peter must be suffering from sunstroke. Most of us don’t experience visions of this kind and when we think about it, few people in the Bible did either. But we should not dismiss the possibility that God will speak afresh and through such means.
The nearest I have come to this is driving on the A3 through Surrey towards London on a very boring stretch of road; I had been resisting the suggestion of friends that I should consider full-time Christian ministry, waiting until I had absolute certainty that this was the right thing to do.
I heard a voice saying 'this is my decision, not yours. Leave me to worry about whether it is right or wrong'.
Am I open to God speaking to me in a new way? Do I have some very fixed views about matters of Christian faith or dogma? How willing am I to bring these to God in prayer or hear what God might be saying to me about these through others?
The vision that Peter experiences is designed to speak to him in particular and may not easily translate to you or me.
But how do I feel about my relationship with God – am I able to hear God saying 'I am about to do a new thing: now it springs forth, do you not perceive it?' (Isaiah 43:19)
Lord, help me to be ready to respond to you like Mary: 'Here am I, the servant of the Lord; let it be with me according to your word' (Luke 1.38).
Today's contributor is the Rev James Hutchings, former Mission Resources Adviser for the Anglican Diocese of Exeter, now Team Rector at Littleham-cum-Exmouth.
Published on 24 September 2017