Day 13: The Whispering Spot
“The almighty could intimidate us with his outside voice, but he woos us with His whisper.”
-Mark Batterson, “Whisper”
And after the earthquake a fire, but the Lord was not in the fire. And after the fire the sound of a low whisper.
1 Kings 19:12
Mark Batterson in his wonderful book Whisper (you must read this book) says, “When someone speaks in a whisper, you have to get really close to hear. In fact you have to put your ear near the person’s mouth. We lean toward a whisper, and that is what God wants. The goal of hearing the heavenly Father’s voice isn’t just hearing his voice; it’s intimacy with him. That’s why he speaks with us in a whisper.”
Once again in this context, Elijah is in the midst of his darkest depression. Instead of shouldering a mantle of victory, the weight of failure and guilt has put an unbearable load upon his shoulders. The curse of Jezebel hunts him down and he wants to die. What is God’s remedy? He feeds him bread from heaven and calls him into a 40 day fasting journey to the mountain of the Lord. What was God doing? He was drawing the weary prophet into a whispering spot where once again the kiss of heaven and a fresh new assignment in life could be given to His friend. There at the end of that fast in a lonely cave, the whisper of God changed the lone prophet’s life forever. “Go anoint Elisha.” He would no longer be alone, a spiritual son would help him fulfill his life assignment.
Friend, make sure in your fast you find a whispering spot as Mark Batterson calls it. Make sure you are not filling intimate space with excessive noise and distractions. Don’t trade The Voice for the noise. Find your cave. “Be still and know that I am God.” The English Poet John Donne said, “ I neglect God and his angels for the noise of a fly.” How sad! Jesus said, “When you pray, go into your closet and close the door.” First of all, find your closet like Elijah found his cave. Secondly, close the door. Shut the cell phone off in measure during this fast. Get a fresh vision rather than television. You want this whisper, this voice, more than anything in the world. An “I love you” from heaven or a “Go anoint Elisha” can shatter your depression.
Maybe you are fasting a Daniel fast because you have children and their is so much distraction. Susanna Wesley had 17 children and there was no whispering spot. But she made her own… she sat in her rocking chair in the middle of the living room and put a blanket over her head and her whispering spot produced John and Charles Wesley, the great revivalists and reformers of England.
After I left seminary as a young man I mopped floors at the local hospital. The broom closet became my prayer closet. I would weep and worship God as I rinsed out my mop and it became my Holy of Holies. Elijah had a cave, Jesus called for a closet, and I had a car where for most of my life I have spent early mornings praying and worshipping. Years ago when in front of a coffee shop I was worshipping God early in the morning and heard a knock on my window. I rolled down the window and a woman was staring at me. She said, “I know who you are, you are Lou Engle, and you are praying.” She then handed me a $100 bill. It was a whisper from God. “I love you Lou, and I love what you are doing. I love your praying.”
Father, I pray for those who are in dark days and feel the deep sense of failure or depression. In their fast let them find a secret place. In the country or in a cave or in a car, let them hear Your whisper. Seal their heart with, “You are my beloved son or daughter.” And show them like Elijah in a gentle breeze what they are to do next. Then give them the courage to obey the Voice.
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