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August 19, 2015

The Lord bless you, Heartdwellers.

I want to make a quick announcement. Some of you have written to us by mail, and we haven't gotten a chance to answer you yet. Forgive us if you don't get a reply from us this month, because we've been just a little bit on the side of overwhelm. But we will, we will get to you...NEXT month!

I wanted to share with you tonight what the Lord had brought up.

Yesterday, He had me post something about Mark Virkler from CommunionWithGod Ministries. He has a very special gift in leading people to communicate with the Lord - two way dialogue, back and forth. It's interesting, because a lot of what he's talking about is exactly what I've been sharing with you all these months. But, he has a slightly different angle, twist on it, and I think it'd be really helpful for you and tonight He asked me to share just the information from his flyer, which will be available as a PDF. And, along with that, to share my experiences along the same lines.

So, I'll get right into it, here.

I wanted to say that, there is something so timeless and ancient about the simple steps I've been teaching you to enter into that quiet place with God. If you are convinced you'll never be able to hear Him, maybe you should switch to a different channel, because on this Channel, the Lord is determined. And, now He has brought another teacher to share with you the simplicity and promise that we can all speak with Him and hear His voice.

So, He's not relenting on this, guys. For those of you who think that I'm a privileged character...the Lord is going to convince you otherwise.

Mark begins by giving a short testimony:

"I tossed and turned in bed, unable to fall asleep. The thought kept going through my mind: "What if I died tonight? I'm not ready to go to heaven." Since I could not shake the thought, I got up, went downstairs and waited for my parents to come home from their meeting. When they did, I announced that I wanted to get saved, and they took me straightway to the pastor's home where he explained the plan of salvation and led me in the sinner's prayer. I was 15 years old when I accepted Jesus Christ into my heart as my Lord and Savior.

It was God's voice that was speaking to me that night, calling me into His kingdom. His voice came as a spontaneous thought inside my head. However, I didn't define this as the primary way God's voice is heard until I had completed a desperate 10 year search to hear Him clearly."

He went to universities, and got degrees, and came out and decided he was going to spend a whole year just listening for God's voice, because he was really, really desperate to hear the Lord. And, a lot of you guys, who say you are not hearing the Lord are in the same place. The thing is, you ARE hearing the Lord - you just don't recognize him. This is what Mark is good at - getting you to recognize His voice.

"Christianity is unique among religions, for it alone offers a personal relationship with the Creator beginning here and now, and lasting throughout eternity. Jesus declared, "This is eternal life - that they may know God" (Jn. 17:3). Unfortunately, many in the Church miss the great blessing of fellowship with our Lord because we have lost the ability to recognize His voice.

Though John 10:27 promises us that "My sheep hear My voice," too many believers are starved for that intimate relationship that alone can satisfy the desire of their hearts. I was one of those sheep who was unable to identify the voice of my Shepherd. I hungered for deeper spiritual intimacy with God, but I could not find it. Then, on the eleventh year of my Christian life, I had the spontaneous thought that 'I should take a year of my life and focus on learning to hear God's voice.' I decided to act on that thought and devote a year to focused effort, learning to hear His voice. Unbeknown to me, it was the Lord calling me to invest that time."

So, that idea that came to him was a spontaneous thought, and it was actually the voice of God, but he hadn't recognized it yet. So, that's what he did.

"That year the Lord revealed four simple keys, all found in Habakkuk 2:1, 2, which unlocked the treasure of His voice. Using the four keys together allowed me to easily hear God's voice on a daily basis. It was the most transforming step I have taken in the 45 years of my Christian life! I would like to share them with you so you can try them and see if they do the same for you."

Okay -then here he starts going into the "keys":

Key #1: God's voice in your heart often sounds like a flow of spontaneous thoughts.

And, I'd like to share with you an example there. There have been a couple of times where I've thought to myself all of a sudden, 'you know? I should go to the store and get those eggs now, so we have them for tomorrow morning.' And, I'll go to the store and the Lord will have someone there that needs ministry. And, I'll realize that that spontaneous thought about going to the store and getting eggs, was actually the Lord's voice setting up a rendezvous between me and another soul who needed prayer!

"Habakkuk knew the sound of God speaking to him (Hab. 2:2). Elijah described it as a still, small voice (1 Kings 19:12). I had always listened for an inner audible voice, and God does speak that way at times.

However, I have found that usually, God's voice comes as spontaneous thoughts, or flowing thoughts.

For example, haven't you ever been driving down the road and had a thought come to you to pray for a certain person? Didn't you believe it was God telling you to pray? What did God's voice sound like? Was it an audible voice, or was it a spontaneous thought that lit upon your mind?"

So, here's a really good point. People think that I hear the Lord's voice very clearly. Well, sometimes I DO hear His voice clearly, but most of the time, it is a spontaneous flow of thoughts. Today, when I was in prayer, all of a sudden I could realize - I could feel something tugging at my heart strings. I realized it was the Lord, trying to interject a word. So, I shifted my attention to Him in a special way - the "tune in" mode. And, He WAS talking to me. Pretty soon, I was able to see His face, as well. "As through a glass, darkly" guys - not like He's sitting on the other side of the room from me, or that He's sitting next to me. I mean - there are times that I get glimpses out of the corner of my eye that He's here, or when I'm writing down a message I'll see His face, I'll see Him leaning over my little stand here, next to my computer. Smiling, and making a point. When I get stuck on a point or a word, He'll repeat it until I write it down (chuckle). And, it's a very spontaneous, gentle thought. It's NOT a crystal clear conversation like you and I are having right now. It's not an audible voice all the time. In fact, more often than not, it's spontaneous or flowing thoughts.

"Experience indicates that we perceive spirit-level communication as spontaneous thoughts..."

Have you ever been in a room with someone, and all of a sudden, you just KNEW what they were thinking? Maybe it wasn't a pleasant experience for you, but I have had that experience. Or, like, if you are with your husband, and all of a sudden you feel like a hamburger, and he says, "You know - I really feel like a hamburger tonight." And, that spontaneous thought comes up, and you were both thinking the same things at the same time. Or, if you are worried about someone, or a situation. It's on your mind, you're doing whatever you're doing around the house, and your mother or friend comes over to the house and says, "You know - I've just been thinking about so-and-so." And you say, "You know - I've just been thinking about them, too. Maybe we should pray for them or call them or go and see them?" THAT's the Lord's voice! It's a spontaneous stream of thought. So - that's spirit level communication. We perceive that, and it comes to us as spontaneous thoughts and impressions. And VISION sometimes, too.

"... and Scripture confirms this in many ways. For example, one definition of paga, a Hebrew word for intercession, is 'a chance encounter or an accidental intersecting.' When God lays people on our hearts, He does it through paga, a chance-encounter thought 'accidentally' intersecting our minds. We consider it chance encounter in that we didn't reason it up, however it is purposeful, because God sent it to us."

How many times have you heard the phone ring, you've been thinking about someone for two or three days, all of a sudden the phone rings, you pick it up and it's that very person! "Oh, I was just thinking about you!" That is spirit level communication, as spontaneous thought, or as impressions. That's exactly what God's voice sounds like. It's very subtle, but it's gets your attention. It's also clear.

"Therefore, when you want to hear God's voice, you tune to chance-encounter..." you've got a little "channel" on your "radio". One says Barking Dog - which you tune out. Screaming Baby, which you tune out. Traffic Noise you tune out. And, Chance Encounter...which you tune IN. And, that's on a very subtle level.

"...spontaneous or flowing thoughts."

And, you make your mind focus on that, to pay attention to those when they come drifting through your mind.

"Even Satan's thoughts come to us as spontaneous thoughts, which is why we are commanded to "take every thought captive" (2 Cor. 10:5). I am sure all of us have experienced spontaneous evil thoughts coming to us, even attacking right in the middle of our prayer and worship times. So, I conclude that analytical thoughts are mine, spontaneous good thoughts come from the Holy Spirit, and spontaneous evil thoughts come from evil spirits.

Now, this gets into discernment, and I've gone over this with you before and how to recognize the voice of the enemy. And Mark does a little of that here:

"God's thoughts line up with Scripture and with His various names: Comforter, Counselor, Teacher, Giver of Life, Healer and Deliverer. His thoughts edify, exhort, and comfort. They are pure, peaceable, gentle, reasonable, full of mercy and good fruits, unwavering (James 3:17).

The MAIN characteristic of the Lord's voice is PEACE. It's peaceful - very peaceful. And, as far as what it sounds like: it's gentle. It's very gentle.

"Satan's thoughts line up with his various names: accuser..."

"Oh, that person is doing such and such"...yeah. Or "Oh, that persons a criminal, or that person's witch."

...adversary, thief who comes to kill, steal and destroy. His thoughts condemn and bring despair, rejection, fear, doubt, unbelief and in general, misery. Satan's thoughts bring jealousy and selfish ambition (James 3:14,15).

In a nutshell, I would say that Satan's thoughts jar us from Peace, and they get us into a form of anxiety. Any kind of anxiety or worry or fear. Those are the number 1 characteristics of Satan's thoughts floating through our minds. That's why I've told you so many times before, if you've got Fear all of a sudden, you've got a demon involved in sending you that Fear. That's a demon's voice.

He uses Habakkuk 2:1 for his model of hearing God.

"Habakkuk said, "I will stand on my guard post..." (Hab. 2:1). Habakkuk knew that to hear God's quiet, inner, spontaneous thoughts, he had to first go to a quiet place and still his own thoughts and emotions. Psalm 62:5 encourages us to silence our souls before God. There is a deep inner knowing (spontaneous flow) in our spirits that each of us can experience when we quiet our flesh and our minds. If we are not still, we will sense only our own thoughts.

'Oh, I've gotta do this, I've gotta do that. I forgot this, oh, did I leave that burner on?' And, it can go on and on endlessly - those are OUR thoughts. Now, this next is what he says, and this is what I've been teaching you through Dwelling Prayer:

"Loving God through a quiet worship song is one very effective way to become still. (Note 2 Kings 3:15.)"

And, I prefer at all times, to approach the Lord through worship. That's just what I've experienced and what I feel. There doesn't HAVE to be music, or worship through music. It can happen spontaneously, where you just FEEL something tugging at your heart and it's the Lord. It's like the Lord tapping you on the shoulder and saying, "I want to talk to you. Tune in to Me."

"After I worship and become silent within, I open myself for that spontaneous flow."

One thing the Lord told me was that Music transports a person OUT of themselves. That's one reason why it's so powerful, because it can bring you into a good dimension, or an evil dimension. But, it transports you out of your present state of mind.

"If thoughts come of things I have forgotten to do, I write them down so I can do them later. If thoughts of guilt or unworthiness come, I repent thoroughly, receive the washing of the blood of the Lamb, putting on His robe of righteousness, seeing myself spotless before God (Is. 61:10; Col. 1:22)"

Now, this is a very important point that he just made, because when I am dancing with the Lord, I always have a spotlessly beautiful dress on - I'm totally clean and glowing. Spotless. And, He presents that image to me while we're dancing together, to help me see myself clothed in HIS righteousness. He's the one who picked those robes for me, and everything is perfect about my being - everything. I believe now, after reading this, it's because He wants me to see myself in His righteousness, and see myself spotless before Him. So that I can relax, and receive from Him and not be hiding, like Adam and Eve had to hide in the garden, because they were naked.

"Clear focus provides the purest flow: To receive the pure word of God, it is very important that my heart be properly focused as I become still because the intuitive flow comes out of the vision being held before one's eyes."

So, now he's talking about Vision.

" If I fix my eyes upon Jesus, the intuitive flow is pure and comes from Jesus. But if I fix my gaze upon some desire of my heart, the intuitive flow is affected by that desire. To have a pure flow I must become still and carefully fix my eyes upon Jesus (Heb. 12:2)."

So, that's very interesting, because, what have we talked about in Dwelling Prayer? That a pure heart is absolutely at the top of the list. The Scriptures say, "The Lord said, 'Blessed are those who have a pure heart, for they will see God."' Wow! That ties in so perfectly with what he's saying here. So, a pure heart is a heart that is not focused on its own agenda. One its own issues. A pure heart is one that's focused on the Lord and what's important to Him. That disposes you to seeing the Lord.

Now, all of us have a vision of what the Lord looks like, in our hearts and our minds. All of us have a picture of what the Lord looks like - we've seen it before. I would ask you here - PLEASE don't get caught up in all kinds of doctrine, talking about how we're not supposed to have any images of anything on Earth or Heaven. If that held ground, and stood - the Lord NEVER would have described the Mercy Seat with angels on either side. And, all of the other shaped animals that were in the Temple. He never would have done that if it were totally true. That's overdoing it, guys.

The enemy knows how powerful and image is. An image of God is VERY powerful. The image of a woman scantily clad is ALSO very powerful. So, the Lord has given us eyes and visions in the Spirit to help us to focus on Him! You don't want to throw the baby out with the bathwater. We have photographs of our children - we don't worship those, they remind us of our children. That's an innocent thing.

Where we get into trouble is where we start making serious life decisions, so we can have that expensive "hot" car, or that big house that we really can't afford. And, we're putting EVERYTHING in subjection, to being able to get that mansion, or get that car, or whatever it is that we are lusting after. Those are the REAL idols. A picture of your children is not an idol - a picture of Jesus is NOT an idol. Those just remind us of Who He is to us, who those souls are to us.

"To receive the pure Word of God, it's very important that my heart become properly focus and becomes still. Because the intuitive flow comes out of the vision before one's eyes."

In other words, if you have a vision of the Lord before your eyes, that's where the flow is going to come from. If you have a picture...of, ummm, something - a dress in a catalogue, or a car, a set of golf clubs! Then, you're going to be focusing on the world and your intuitive flow is going to come from the world. But, if you fix your gaze on the desire of your heart, the intuitive flow is going to be affected by that desire. So - to have a pure flow, I must become Still, and carefully fix my eyes on Jesus.

So, he has his eyes fixed on Jesus in order to receive that pure flow of thought from Jesus.

"Again, quietly worshiping the King, and receiving out of the stillness that follows quite easily accomplishes this. Beginning my prayer time as Jesus taught us to pray is expedient: "Our Father Who art in heaven, hallowed be Thy name..." Jesus taught us to begin prayer by lifting our eyes up to our Father and beholding Him. We don't start prayer with our issues. We start our prayer by gazing upon Him!"

That's beautiful - I really like that. And, that's what I do when I put on worship music - I immediately start looking for the Lord in my vision, 'cause I know He's there. Until He makes Himself very clear to me - and He's always at my right.

Key #2: Fix your eyes upon Jesus and ask to receive visions.

"Habakkuk said, "I will keep watch to see," (Hab. 2:1,2). Habakkuk was actually looking for a vision as he prayed. "

And, that's what I do when I go into prayer - I'm looking for that vision, because I know Jesus is there.

"Since I believe the Bible is meant to be lived, I decided that I, too, would begin looking with the eyes of my heart into the Spirit world to see what I could see."

You see, the techniques that we use are very, very similar, and I think for good reason. I think that they're solid and Scriptural. And, it's interesting how many parallels there are between Mark's teaching on this, and our teaching on Dwelling prayer

"Do what King David did! A good way to begin using the eyes of your heart is by doing what King David did: "For David says of Him, 'I SAW THE LORD ALWAYS IN MY PRESENCE; FOR HE IS AT MY RIGHT HAND,

SO THAT I WILL NOT BE SHAKEN" (Acts 2:25 NASB). The original Psalm makes it clear that this was a decision of David's, not a constant supernatural visitation: "I have set (literally, I have placed) the Lord continually before me; because He is at my right hand, I will not be shaken" (Ps. 16:8)."

You know, it's kinda funny because, when I go to the store, or I'm out running around doing errands I think to myself, 'Well, I wonder if the Lord is here...and I look out of the corner of my eye, and I see Him sitting next to me. WithOUT His seat belt, by the way...(chuckle.) I see Him sitting on the right, in the passenger's seat. When I make the effort to focus to see if He's there - He's there!

So, it's a matter of seeing the Lord always in your presence. Because He IS at your right hand, and there's so many Scriptures about Him being at our right hand. Many, many Scriptures about that.

(this is the end of the first video)